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Gooseberries

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If you buy gooseberry plants from Lubera® today, you will soon be able to enjoy the tasty, aromatic and healthy fruits straight from the bush.

   
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Gooseberry Captivator (thornless)

An almost thornless red gooseberry

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Crispa® Darling®

The delicacy gooseberry

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Crispa® Goldling®

The gold-bearing, large gooseberry

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Crispa® Greenling®

Green gooseberry with good tolerance to mildew

£17.90 *

Gooseberry Crispa® Nibbling®

The aromatic snack and pot gooseberry

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Crispa® Solemio®

A mildew-tolerance taste explosion

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Easycrisp® Lady Late (thornless)

The latest thornless gooseberry, dark red berries

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Easycrisp® Lady Sun (thornless)

Thornless yellow gooseberry with soft skin

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Easycrisp® Madame Sanssouci

Late, red Gooseberry with excellent mildew tolerance

£17.90 *

Gooseberry Easycrisp® Mr. Green® (thornless)

A green-coloured, (almost) thornless gooseberry

From £8.40 *

Gooseberry Luberissima Crispa® Goldling®

The gold-bearing, large gooseberry

£41.90 *

   
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More useful information about Gooseberries

Stachelbeeren kaufen grüne StachelbeereSour and hard was yesterday - our modern varieties are sweet and juicy, many have a particularly soft skin and, thanks to the spineless branches, are very easy to pick and are injury-free. All of the varieties offered in the Lubera® plant shop come from our own breeding programme, which not only focuses on mildew tolerance and spinelessness but also on dessert fruit quality.

So if you buy yellow, green or red gooseberries from our large selection, the dreaded gooseberry mildew can be kept safely at bay in your home garden. Gooseberry plants belong to the genus of the saxifrage family; they are cultivated in a similar way to currants and are even a little less demanding, as they tolerate more shade. And above all: gooseberries are much larger than currants. Just imagine shoving a big, sweet gooseberry into your mouth - you bite on it, the juice squirts out of the burst fruit peel, filling your whole palate...just flavour, pleasure and juice! No other berry fruit (with the exception of the table grape) can offer this crispness, this suddenness of the fruit experience. But of course, we should not praise the day before the evening: before you can enjoy the gooseberry, you must first buy and grow a gooseberry plant. ;-)

Buy gooseberry plants - our gooseberries bring more colour to the garden

Green gooseberries means sour? This is a prejudice that unfortunately still often exists today, which is not at all true for our (almost) thornless gooseberry Easycrisp® Mr. Green® and the juicy, aromatic Crispa® Greenling®. With both varieties, you will buy gooseberries that have excellent mildew tolerance in their genes and they are so sweet when fully ripe that you will enjoy the large, hairless fruits best when they come straight from the bush.

Yellow gooseberries: Without exaggerating, you can actually describe the strikingly large fruits as golden. In any case, when you buy our Crispa® Solemio® gooseberries, your berry garden will have a real warm, golden glow. Very sweet as well as incomparably juicy, the pleasure of snacking on this delicate, medium-late variety can lead to real taste explosions. By the way, all of the yellow varieties come exclusively from our own breeding programme at Lubera®, which leave our nursery as vigorously grown young plants in 1.3 or 5-litre containers.

Red gooseberries are one more portion of berry and a bit more fruity. Our red gooseberry variety Crispa® Darling® with its upright, healthy growth is probably the most beautiful gooseberry plant in this colour (with excellent tolerances against leaf fall disease and American mildew) and it is the most aromatic variety as well. You can also buy many other red varieties of gooseberries, which are thornless like the Gooseberry Captivator or Crispa® Nibbling® Spinefree (a cross between Redeva and Hinnonmäki), which can also be cultivated as a decorative potted plant in a sunny spot on your terrace.

Gooseberry fruits or gooseberry plants

The question of whether to buy gooseberry fruit from a fruit dealer or to grow gooseberry plants in your own garden is quickly answered. Gooseberries are still cultivated in a very limited way and the fruit can only be bought in the short season (and not always) in the supermarket. In addition, the old, large-fruited varieties of the 19th century are still grown commercially, which not only do not compete with our garden varieties in terms of taste but they are also very susceptible to mildew. Such a professional gooseberry planting has to be sprayed far more than 10 times against mildew. It is no wonder that cultivation has declined sharply and that consumers are not exactly crying out for gooseberries either. The latter, however, is wrong: gooseberries are not only the largest but also the most exciting fruits in the berry garden.

Conclusion: you have no choice but to plant gooseberry plants yourself!

Which gooseberry plant or varieties are the best for me?

Ultimately, the decision-making process leading to the purchase of gooseberry plants can be broken down into the following questions, which must be answered:

  • Do I want to buy a gooseberry standard or a shrub?
  • Do I choose a spinefree or almost thornless gooseberry or a gooseberry in the true sense of the word (with spines)?
  • Which colour do I like best and perhaps also: what are my taste preferences?

Gooseberries: buy a shrub or standard plant

As with many other types of soft fruit, it is also true of gooseberries that berry bushes generally produce higher yields than standard varieties (offered by us with a stem height of 80 cm). Berry bushes are also easier to rejuvenate due to their ground shoots and they are more durable. Nevertheless, many customers who buy gooseberries tend to buy plants with stem crowns because they can be harvested at arm's height and without having to bend down, and because the high-stem gooseberry bushes look very attractive from the moment they sprout, flower and then with their coloured fruits...The question 'buy standard plants or gooseberry bushes' is ultimately an aesthetic one: what do you like better in your garden? Remember that with a gooseberry standard you can have a two-storey garden, so to speak. After 1-2 years of establishment, vegetables, strawberries, perennials etc. can be planted under the crown.

Gooseberries with or without spines

First of all, a small and funny explanation of terms is allowed. Thorns/spines are actual plant organs, in the end, they are pointed, so to speak unfinished shoots. They can also usually only be removed with pruning shears. Prickles, on the other hand, are additional organs attached to the outermost plant layer, which can usually be easily removed, as in the rose. Roses, therefore, do not have thorns, but prickes. And gooseberry plants, I'm sorry to say, do not have prickles, but spines that ultimately come from the shoot itself.

But back to the question: should I rather buy a spinefree or almost thornless gooseberry plant or do I prefer gooseberries with classic spines?

The answer is somewhat different than one might expect. Of course, gooseberry plants with few thorns (this is our whole Lubera® Easycrisp® family of gooseberries) have obvious advantages: they are easier to cut, more pleasant and above all, less bloody to harvest, and you certainly won't destroy your jeans or scratch your legs in passing...But gooseberries without thorns on the one hand (e.g. Captivator Easycrisp®) and classic gooseberries, on the other hand, have other advantages and disadvantages that are clearly distributed. First of all, thornless gooseberries are clearly more tolerant of American gooseberry powdery mildew, their tolerance is actually almost immunity. This is due to the fact that more American gooseberry blood (which brings tolerance and thornlessness) has been bred into these varieties. Classic spiny gooseberries in the Crispa® family from the Lubera breeding programme have very good tolerance against powdery mildew, but no absolute resistance. On the other hand, the classic Crispa® gooseberries with thorns are significantly larger than the thornless varieties and taste slightly better on average, although the difference gets smaller with each breeding generation. So how should one decide? Tolerance to fruit size? Spinlessness against slightly better fruit quality? It's your choice.

The question of the colour choice

This question, on the other hand, is easily and quickly decided. The gooseberry colours are so beautiful, so bright and so different that multiple colours should be planted whenever possible. It's simply worth it visually. Gooseberries are also ornamental shrubs!

The yellow varieties, by the way, bear the biggest fruits in our assortment. In my opinion, the red gooseberries have the fruitiest aroma. Even the yellow fruits can also be very sweet, but they do not develop the same fruitiness. But here the tastes are certainly and justifiably very different.

Perhaps another important criterion is the desired later use of the berries. If children live in the household, sweet varieties would be preferable as sweet fruits. Fruits with a slightly sour taste, on the other hand, are more suitable for the production of fruit juices or jams. The daily consumption of fully ripened berries should be between 150 and 200 grams per day for adults, which would cover 50 per cent of the vitamin C requirement. With good care and optimal site conditions, they will certainly not have to buy gooseberries on the market in the future, since an average and already somewhat older shrub will usually bear between 3 and 6 kilograms of fruit.

Gooseberry harvesting

When are gooseberries ripe, when should they be harvested? Depending on the processing and intended use, the answer can vary. Due to their higher acid and pectin content, fruits that are not yet fully ripe are ideal for preserves, compote or jam preparation. For fresh enjoyment, however, one should wait until they are fully ripe. Overripe fruits, which can develop very quickly in very hot summer weather, should also be avoided because they often have an unpleasant secondary taste (soapy).

Early harvesting for compote and marmalade has another advantage: gooseberry trees are noticeably relieved in this simple way and will subsequently allow particularly beautiful and aromatic berries to ripen. By the way, the average price per kilo at the weekly market for fresh gooseberries is rarely less than 4.00 euros.

Location and soil conditions

Before you buy your new gooseberry plants, the question of space in the garden must first be clarified, as the shrubs can reach up to one metre wide after just a few years. Using the appropriate filters at the top of this shop page, you can easily set the final sizes of the shrubs and trees you want. A minimum distance of 100-150 centimetres must be allowed between the individual bushes. In the case of the high-stem shrubs, which should ideally be stabilised bya framework or at least a supporting pole, 80 to 130 centimetres of space is sufficient. Late frosts and areas with waterlogging are less favourable locations for currants, and the new shrubs will not do well in the long term even in extremely shady areas near older trees. Therefore, low shrubs in the neighbourhood, especially in hot climates, are ideal as a location. The partial shade in the middle of summer has the advantage that sunburn (on the fruit) is less frequent during the final ripening period of the gooseberries. As far as the soil is concerned, heavy soil and wet soils should be avoided at all costs. Therefore, when buying and planting gooseberries, make sure that the soil is nutritious and preferably humus-rich, which can, of course, be improved by adding your own compost or fertile soil No. 2. Particularly good plant growth is achieved at a pH value between 6 and 7.

Buy gooseberries and plant them properly

Like all our strong and healthy container plants, gooseberries are also allowed in the garden soil all year round. Planting should be avoided immediately after days of continuous rain as well as during persistent ground frost.

No matter which of the methods of cultivation described below you prefer, planting after buying gooseberries is only slightly different. You will need a pit about two spades deep, which must be at least twice as large as the pot ball. Then take the gooseberry plant out of the container and tear open the root ball all around with a garden claw or a screwdriver before burying it, as the shrub or gooseberry standard will grow better and faster with this completely harmless procedure. It should be noted that shrubs should be planted so deeply that they can be covered with a four to five-centimetre thick layer of soil (one centimetre is sufficient for spindles), which is at the same level as the garden soil at the end.

Gooseberry plants that are to be grown as spindles and also high standards are planted higher, here there is only a very thin layer of topsoil above the root ball. The reason for this is easy to find: for gooseberry bushes, we want as many fresh soil shoots as possible (which can develop from the buried parts of the shoots),;in spindles and standards we want as few shoots as possible...

Growing and pruning

Gooseberry plants can be cultivated in different ways. The best known and probably easiest way is to grow it as a shrub, but if you want the very best fruit quality, planting it as a spindle would be the first choice.

Spindle cultivation

With this somewhat labour- and material-intensive method, you will achieve a very representative hedge in a relatively short time, in case you want to buy several gooseberry plants at once. With proper soil conditions and regular care, gooseberry spindles can reach a quite impressive height of between 150 and 170 centimetres after only two to three years. Only the strongest shoots are used in this form of cultivation, already during planting, and during the following period, they are tied piece by piece to the framework or the individual wooden pole.

Growing as a shrub

If there is enough free space in the garden, it makes sense to buy different coloured gooseberries. This not only allows you to reconcile the naturally mostly different tastes of all family members. This yellow-green-red colour combination also has a unique visual appeal as the berries ripen in the summer. Once you have decided on one or more shrubs, four to six of the strongest shoots are left on the shrub during the first planting cut, while the rest is cut off. During the full yield, the plants can manage with seven to ten shoots.

As a standard

Our standard gooseberries are bought by many customers who have very limited space in their garden and who would like to have a second level in their garden, so to speak. Please remember to start underplanting only after one year of standing, so the standard has more time to establish itself. The attractive gooseberry standards with a stem height of 75-85 cm are also ideal as easy-care potted plants.

The correct cut of the gooseberry standard can be imagined to be very similar to the cut of a shrub one storey below: old shoots that have been removed are removed to stubs, the new shoots are left and if they are very long, they are also shortened by a third for stabilisation.

Fertilising gooseberries

When you buy gooseberries in our shop, it is best to add a bucket of Frutilizer® Compound Fertiliser Plus to your shopping basket because after planting the shrubs, 50 to 100 grams of fertiliser help the young plants to start growing well. Depending on the specific soil conditions at your location, we recommend additional fertiliser applications in March and mid-May (50 to 60 grams each) and again shortly before harvesting your fruits (10 to 15 grams). As with currants, the fertiliser level is rather high in order to stimulate as much fresh, new growth as possible. Just like currants, which also belong to the genus Ribes, gooseberries bear the biggest and best fruits on young, 2-4-year-old wood.

Pruning

Like the other Ribes bushes (i.e. fourberries, red currants, blackcurrants), gooseberry plants need regular pruning. If this is the first time you buy a gooseberry, you should know this about pruning: the main aim is to create an open structure in the shrub from the inside out so that air, light and moisture can circulate continuously between flowering and harvest time. Since gooseberries bear on the younger wood, the branches and side shoots must be regularly cut back, similar to currants. The individual steps for bushes, spindles and standards are explained in our article 'How to prune a gooseberry'. Here it is especially important that the basic considerations are observed: gooseberries like currants need to be fertilised and cut relatively heavily to produce more growth. This is the only way to prevent the plant from ageing and only in this way will you get the best, largest and most fruits. Pruning does not take something away from the plant but makes it easier for the plant to grow. Pathogens and their spread can thus be effectively countered with relatively little effort. Even if you buy gooseberries from Lubera, which already have excellent disease tolerance, it is still not possible to completely rule out pest infestation. However, with special measures, it is possible to prevent or detect possible plant diseases of gooseberries early.

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