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How to take fruit bush cuttings


It's easy to propagate your favourite fruit bushes by taking hardwood cuttings from healthy plants. Suitable fruits include gooseberries, blackcurrants, whitecurrants and redcurrants.

How to do it

Cutting a stem from the base of a currant bush


Select a healthy stem of the current season's growth, and cut it from the plant right at the base. Select only one or two stems from each bush.

Reduce the cutting to 30cm long


Reduce the cutting down to 25-30cm long, trimming just below a bud at the base, and above a bud at the top. Remove soft growth at the stem tip. With redcurrants, whitecurrants and gooseberries, remove all but the top three or four buds to create a clear stem. Leave all the buds on blackcurrants.

Make a slit trench with a spade


Choose a warm, bright site with free-draining soil, and make a vertical slit in the soil with a spade. Then put a layer of sharp sand or grit in the base of the slit trench.

Planting cuttings


Insert the cuttings to about half their depth, spacing them about 20cm apart. Firm the soil back around them, then water in well. Water in dry spells and the cuttings should be ready to transplant in about a year's time.

Discuss this project

Talkback: How to take fruit bush cuttings
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JamesHat 11/11/2013 at 15:55

Any harm in potting up cuttings in a mixture of home soil and compost?

fidgetbones 11/11/2013 at 16:11

Are you talking about unrooted cuttings or   rooted? What  type of fruit bush?

I put blackcurrant cuttings in a slit trench in sandy soil in the veg patch. I then pot them up into a mix of compost and soil or plant them into final position., The only problem with the soil is weed seeds in it.

JamesHat 11/11/2013 at 16:40

Thank you Fidgetbones.

Very helpful. I have a blackcurrent bush heading for its 3rd fruiting year. Given to me by a keen gardener who raised it from a cutting herself.

fidgetbones 11/11/2013 at 17:00

If you put foot long lengths of this years wood  in a slit trench outside, just leave it until next winter when the leaves fall off , and then move to final position.