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gooseberrys and mulching a tree

 
Jennifer Smith
Posts: 714
Location: Zone 5
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While out riding in the woods yesterday I saw some gooseberry bushes.  The berrys were purple, about the size of small marbles, and sweet enough to eat out of hand.  I was impressed, my riding companion was not. 

She said they were not as big as she is used to, but she is used to green ones.  I did some reading on the internet and the purple are less common.  I remember then as like pea sized... what is typical?

They are shade lovers so will be suitable as understory...if only I had mature trees and some shade to start.  These are growing in deep shade.

They propagatelike grapes so plan to get cuttings after summer is over.  I might even get some now. I would have to make sure they stay moist though.  I have maybe 10 grap plants doing well from my CA trip. 

Everything is still in pots here but the backyard is fenced now so I can start landscaping my it.  I am spreading barn scrapings thinly around on lawn and piling the bigger pieces around silver maple in center of yard. 

There is something about not mulching too deep or all around the tree, like only 1/4 of the way so we do not suffocate the tree Does this sound right?  Could I get away with 1/3 of the way around? 

 
Jordan Lowery
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
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around here gooseberries grow wild by the thousands. the best plants are always growing at the base of a pine tree, they do not like sun, full shade is best. cuttings are really easy to root. small cuttings do better than bigger ones for me. softwood or hardwood.
 
Robert Ray
gardener
Posts: 1350
Location: Cascades of Oregon
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Jennifer,
I just mound up compost around the base of my gooseberries good and deep and the canes sprout roots into the mound. I then cut the canes off and transplant. That way I don't have to bother with potting up the cuttings.
 
Emerson White
Posts: 1206
Location: Alaska
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look for sawflies, in an urban environment with out the right predators there numbers can climb into the thousands and they can strip a bush of foliage in a week.
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
Posts: 4434
Location: North Central Michigan
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here i don't have gooseberries and they are illegal to sell here, but i have wild black currants that the birds spread around, and they make the best jelly.

I find a new little bush here and there now and then..i should dig up the bushes and move them to my berry area..but right now they are just spotted here and there about wherever the birds pooped..

one is actually "clilmbing" up a trellis and another climbing up between a fence and a few black spruce trees..odd little ducks..thre are a few green berries on the smaller one and the larger one should be loaded (if i'd go look) but they aren't ready here in Mich yet.
 
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