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Moving gooseberries

I want to change my fruit bed around by leaving blackberries/raspberries and tayberries in situ but moving out gooseberries which are blocked by the taller fruit. Problems with sawfly last year make me want to move them to another plot altogether. Will the sawfly lava still be in the root areas of the gooseberries and will I be moving them as well as the plants? When and how should I treat the gooseberries against infestation?



  • Bee witchedBee witched Scottish BordersPosts: 491

    Hi Biofreak,

     I make up a spray of neem oil and as soon as all the leaves are out in April I drench each bush. Any spare solution goes onto the soil below the plant as the earthworms are supposed to love it. I do a second drench at the end of May (just in case) and have had great crops since.

    Neem is totally organic and although it stinks a bit is easy to mix up and apply (see link below). I got mine off ebay .... wasn't expensive for a big bottle which will last ages. At room temperature it is solid, but goes liquid again with a couple of hours in the airing cupboard.

    Am using this year on the lilies as the dreaded beetle has now put an appearance in Scotland.

    Just a shame it doesn't work on slugs ....

    So, worth a try ... good luck.


    Bees must gather nectar from two million flowers to make one pound of honey   
  • Bee witchedBee witched Scottish BordersPosts: 491

    Hi Verdun,

    Got mine off ebay ....  good sized bottle so will last me for ages.

    Neem is best used preventatively ... which is why I spray my couple of gooseberry bushes (and the solomon's seal) in April and again in May.

    Have been doing this for 4 years now and it works a treat.


    Bees must gather nectar from two million flowers to make one pound of honey   
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 16,247

    Has anyone else noticed that sawflies only begin to arrive when the gooseberry bush is about three years old? I've never noticed them attacking a young plant.

    If you can be bothered to pick them off by hand (prickly but satisfying) the birds love themimage

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • When I inherited a gooseberry bush which was attacked by sawfly I laid a 1mtr. square of weed matting around the base of the bush which has worked really well. The sawfly overwinter in the soil below the bushes so if planning to move them, now would be a good time if you wash the roots thoroughly before replanting in the new site, then put the matting down.

    Gooseberry icecream is delicious!

  • biofreakbiofreak Posts: 743

    Thanks for all the wonderful varied advice - Tempted to try the lot as 12 bushes (2yrs old) so could try all methods on say 2 of each. On second thoughts I think Neem Oil and matting makes the most sense on new ground. Still I did not know the full lifestory of sawfly - Do they affect other fruit?

  • ninnin Posts: 216

    In my family we never move gooseberry bushes dad did twice and 9 months later i was born first time and my sister the second. I risked it once and along came my third son.

    Mum always said she found me under a gooseberry bush didnt explain until i moved one why and then it was to late.image

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