[NAFEX] gooseberries

John S swim_at_svc at yahoo.com
Sat May 3 23:30:13 EDT 2008


Ernest,

A major portion of my limited growing space is devoted to gooseberries and blueberries.  At last count, my collection has nearly 20 varieties of gooseberries but not Pixwel.  Fortunately for me I heard its recommendations before I got around to purchasing.

Of all the varieties, I think Hinnomaki yellow, Hinnomaki red, Black Velvet and Poorman are the best (for taste).  I'd be hard pressed to pick a preference among that group, but they are all different.  I do not have Invicta yet.  Flavor wise, I find it difficult to distinguish between Poorman and H. red.

H. yellow is a spreading form that grows slowly. After about 8 years mine is about 2' tall.  I trim the spreading branches from time to time to increase the height.  I'm also growing out some taller, less desirable vars for creating standards with H.yellow.  I propagated my H. yellows to about 10 plants last year, as they are so well behaved and worthwhile.  H. yellow and Black Velvet are relatively easy to propagate.  Poorman and H. red appear to be a little harder.

All four of the vars mentioned above suffer from black spot, which is very common here.  A couple of annual copper based sprayings control it well and it does not seem to impact productivity.  All of my gooseberries are container grown, so that I can move to bird shelter when needed.  That does slow them down a bit.

My experience is that gooseberries do not refrigerate well - it seems to degrade the taste to me.  However, a significant amount of my crop goes into vacuum bags in the freezer.  Freezing does something to the flavor that makes them an excellent winter snack.

So I do agree with the varieites you choose.  You had some good advice as far as I'm concerned.

John

Ernest Plutko <ernestplutko at wiktel.com> wrote: Pixwell gooseberry is the type mostly sold in this area.  They are
easy to grow but are sour and make poor quality filling for pies. 
Today I received Poorman, Black Velvet, Invicta and Yellow Hinomaki
plants.  Has anyone  had experience with these gooseberries?  I grew
Pixwell for years and had no problems with diseases except mouse
damage but I don't think they are worth growing.


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