Slow painting

Wednesday 7 May 2008

First foray - blackcurrants

I long for homemade blackcurrant jam. Just writing that makes me hungry - imagine a slice of toast, thick with dark purple blackcurrant jam...For our first foray I've put in a modest three bushes, until I get the hang of the feeding and pruning regime. My Reader's Digest 'New Illustrated guide to Gardening' (1979) informs me in rather 1950's BBC tones that 'For the average family, 9-12 bushes should yield ample fruit', but I think that's a bit ambitious.

The modest three bushes arrived mid-week when I had no spare time to get along to the allotment, so I had to sheuch them in temporarily to a border in the back garden.

The variety is Ben Sarek, which can be planted as close as 4 feet apart. My gardening apprentice and I didn't think that we had 3x4 feet to spare once the paths on either side were taken into account, so we opted for a stylish triangular formation. The plan is to put sweet peas in either side of the 'point'.

The gardening apprentice prepared the ground first of all:

Then we planted and watered:

And following instructions, we cut each stem back to two outward facing buds

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