Red currant pruning

Matty2Matty2 Posts: 4,820

I have 2 red currant bushes which were planted about a year ago. They did not fruit this year and I know they need pruning. My instinct is to leave them but I think I have read somewhere they need to be cut back now. I am new to fruit growing. When and where do I make the cut, please?



  • They need pruning after fruiting so I would leave them this year and look at them again next year. 

  • Matty2Matty2 Posts: 4,820


  • They are not as easy to prune as Blackcurrents where I just cut back hard the old fruited wood.  However Redcurrants also bear their fruit on old wood. Prune bushes by removing diseased or only very old branches in winter, then prune new growth back to two buds in early summer to keep plants compact. Leaders should be pruned to outward facing buds unless the branches are bending or crossing, keep the middle open, they then should be cut to upward + outward  facing buds. Best left until they have started fruiting.

    Good luck,

  • Matty2Matty2 Posts: 4,820

    Thank you all. I will leave them and swat up on prunung in the mean time for the season after.

  • jo4eyesjo4eyes Posts: 2,032

    Bjay- excellent book on pruning is 'How to prune' by the late John Cushnie. My copy is full of scribbles in the margins.

    I also keep a diary of when & what I did to my bushes each yr. The weather also plays a part & last yr we had very liitle sun up here!

    Looking at the latest forecast I've already told OH that shall be pruning my fruit bushes this Saturday! J.

  • Paddy5Paddy5 Posts: 71

    Not sure just how much to cut off my redcurrant bushes.  New growth or old ??

  • waterbuttswaterbutts Posts: 1,221

    Paddy5, if your bushes are over three years old then they get pruned once in summer and once in winter. In summer, after gathering the fruit,  cut the side shoots ( this year's growth) back to 5 leaves. Don't touch the main upward pointing branches , the leaders, unless they are curled up by aphids and then only cut off what you have to to make them healthy. In winter, from Nov. to Mar., cut the leaders, the main upward pointing branches , by a half to a bud pointing the way you want the plant to grow next year. Then, go back to the laterals that you timmed back in the summer, and cut them back again to three buds. As the plant gets older you will have to cut out some of the older leaders to make way for stronger, fitter shoots. But that is it. It's not as complicated as it sounds.

    You don't say how many bushes you have, but I have 2 four-year old plants and I've had so many redcurrants this year I left half of them for the birds.

  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,115

    We were also blessed, the birds left half for us!

  • IlksIlks Posts: 11

    Hi all,


    On the subject of leaders, I planted a new bush from a nursery last year, it was a cordon.  I did not cut the leader after I planted it as it seems to be suggested I should have.


    Should I do it now or wait until early next year, I haven't ruined my redcurrant by not doing it have I? :/

Sign In or Register to comment.