White currant Verdavia: the main characteristics of the variety
White currants are not as widespread among gardeners as red and black, but they have excellent taste characteristics and a useful chemical composition. One of the best varieties of white currant is Verdavia. High bushes during the ripening period are literally strewn with clusters of large berries, which are suitable for fresh consumption and culinary processing. Description and characteristics of Verdavia white currant, especially planting and cultivating varieties, as well as the rules for combating possible diseases and pests are presented later in the article.
Description of Verdavia white currant variety
Perennial bushes of Verdavia currant require free space. On garden plots, they can be planted in rows to get a beautiful hedge. In spring, she will decorate the area with her beautiful flowers, and in summer clusters will appear on the plants, strewn with large and sweet berries.
Did you know? The Russian name for the “currant” berry appeared due to the distinct aroma of the plant and comes from the word “stench”, which means a strong smell.
The botanical description of white currant of this variety is presented below:
- The plant is vigorous, and its height reaches 1.2–1.5 m.
- The currant root system is branched and located at a depth of 50-60 cm from the soil surface.
- Shrub shoots are strong and powerful, form a lush and sprawling crown.
- The leaves are dense, rounded in shape. Small denticles are located at their edges, and the surface of the leaf plate is painted in bright green.
- The bush begins to bloom in May. At the same time, drooping bell-shaped inflorescences of medium size, consisting of small flowers with lilac petals, are formed on the plant.
- The life expectancy of a bush of white currant is more than 20 years.
Unlike red and black varieties, white currants began to be cultivated much later. Even at the beginning of the twentieth century. this variety of plants was not isolated into a separate subgroup, but was considered to be a variety of red currant with an atypical color of berries.
Most European breeders worked on the cultivation of new species of white currant, and the varieties of culture they obtained quickly spread to other countries and received many positive reviews from gardeners. Verdavia variety (Ribes rubrum Werdavia) was obtained in Holland. The bushes have good frost resistance and are unpretentious in care, so they are actively grown not only in Europe, but also in the United States, Canada, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus.
Appearance, characteristics of berries, ripening time, yield
When choosing a variety of white currants for growing in their area, the gardener first of all pays attention to the crop yield and commodity characteristics of the fruits. Verdavia variety has regular fruiting, and its ripe berries are suitable for fresh use and for culinary processing.
The following are the main characteristics of the yield of the variety and a description of the berries:
- Male and female flowers bloom on the bush, so Verdavia currants do not need pollinators.
- The variety is medium early - the berries begin to ripen in the second half of July, and in the northern regions - in early August.
- The fruits are collected in bulk clusters and are located close to each other. Each bunch is connected to the shoot of the bush with the help of a green stalk of medium thickness.
- The berries are spherical in shape and large in size. Outside, they are covered with a strong and translucent golden yellowish skin with a light pinkish tint.
- The diameter of each berry is about 0.8–1 cm, and the mass is up to 1.2 g.
- The dense pulp of Verdavia currant has a rich sweet taste with a characteristic refreshing acidity, contains a small amount of seeds.
- The average yield of a variety is 5–7 kg of ripe berries from each bush.
Important! Verdavia whitecurrant seedlings begin to bear fruit for 2 years after planting.
Berries of white currant not only have an attractive appearance, but also have a useful chemical composition.
100 g of ripe fruits contain:
- monosaccharides and disaccharides - 8 g;
- fiber - 2.5 g;
- pectin - 1.1 g;
- organic acids - 2.3 g;
- ash - 0.7 g;
- iron - 500 mcg;
- vitamin A - 0.4 mg;
- vitamin C - 40 mg;
- Vitamin B1 - 0.01 mg;
- Vitamin B2 - 0.02 mg;
- Vitamin B9 - 5 mcg;
- vitamin PP - 0.3 mg.
Due to its rich chemical composition, white currant berries are often used in traditional medicine recipes for the treatment of diseases and general strengthening of the body.
Advantages and disadvantages of the variety
Verdavia white currant has a number of characteristic features that distinguish it from other varieties and make cultivation profitable.
- The variety is characterized by such positive qualities:
- relatively early harvest ripening;
- excellent frost resistance;
- unpretentiousness in leaving;
- attractive appearance and excellent taste of berries;
- good transportability;
- universal use of fruits;
- good immunity to diseases and pests.
- The disadvantages of the variety include:
- the need for regular pruning;
- shedding berries in case of lack of nutrients in the soil;
- large sizes of the bush.
Despite its high productivity, Verdavia currants are not demanding in care, so even a beginner gardener can cope with its cultivation. To start cultivating a variety, you need to choose a site that is suitable for the bushes, purchase planting material, and correctly perform the procedure for planting plants in the ground. After this, the bushes are provided with watering, fertilize the soil around them with nutrients, and also carry out mandatory pruning to maintain the correct shape of the crown.
Before the onset of winter, a set of measures is carried out to prepare the plant for colds, and in the case of diseases or pests, diseased specimens are treated with special preparations and mixtures.
Seat selection and landing
Bushes of white currant can give the maximum yield only if they are planted in a suitable place. Currant Verdavia does not respond well to salinization of the soil, so you can not plant this crop near a compost heap or wash basin, in which they wash something using household chemicals.A plot for growing currants is recommended to be selected according to the following criteria:
- openness for free access to sunlight - in the shade, the berries will be small and acidic, yield will decrease, and plants will often be affected by diseases and pests;
- light soil with a loose structure and a neutral level of acidity - loamy or sandy loamy soil containing a sufficient amount of nutrients is best suited;
- groundwater is no closer than 0.5–1 m from the surface of the earth — waterlogging of the soil is detrimental to the root system of the bush and can trigger the development of diseases;
- protection against cold draft - for cultivation, it is recommended to choose a place located on the south side of the fence or house, so that the wall protects the plant from the north wind.
Did you know? The leader in growing currants in the world is Russia.
For planting, they choose strong and healthy 1-2-year-old seedlings that have a branched root system and reach a height of about 40 cm. It is recommended to buy them only in specialized nurseries in order to guaranteedly get a copy that meets the listed varietal characteristics.
Not less than a few weeks before the planting of young plants, it is recommended to perform a set of actions to prepare the land in the selected area:
- Digging the ground to a depth of 50 cm, clearing it of debris and plant debris - this procedure helps to destroy the larvae of pests that live in the upper layers of the soil.
- Dig up pits with a diameter of up to 0.6 m and a depth of about 0.4 m, placing them at a distance of at least 1.5 m from each other.
- For each well, prepare a mixture consisting of soil obtained by digging a pit, 9 kg of compost, 170 g of superphosphate and 35 g of potassium sulfate.
- Fill the hole with the resulting fertile mixture to 2-3 depths, and pour a thin layer of ordinary garden soil on top.
Important! It is recommended to plant young bushes of Verdavia currant in early September so that the seedling can take root in a new place before the frost.
Step-by-step instructions for planting currant seedlings are presented below:
- Submerge the roots of the seedling in the water a few hours before planting. Then soak them in a semi-liquid mixture of water and clay.
- Place the root system of the young bush in the prepared planting pit, placing the seedling at an angle of 45 ° to the soil surface. The root neck should be at a depth of about 5-6 cm from the surface of the earth.
- Spread the roots on the surface of the slide from the nutrient mixture. Sprinkle them on top of loose soil.
- Lightly tamp the soil around the seedling with your hands, forming the area of the trunk circle.
- Trim all shoots of the bush to a height of 25 cm to stimulate the growth of side branches. Pour 20 l of warm water into each seedling.
- After the earth absorbs all moisture, mulch the area of the trunk circle with humus or peat.
Bushes of this variety do not require specific care, but for high yields, they need to be properly watered and provided with the necessary nutrients for normal growth and fruiting. It is equally important to carry out soil cultivation around plants to prevent the propagation of pests and pathogens.
Did you know? In addition to black, white and red currants, there are varieties with orange, green and purple berries.
The main bushes care features are listed below:
- in the absence of rain for a long time, whitecurrant bushes should be watered every 9–12 days, spending 20–25 liters of water per plant;
- during flowering, ovary formation and fruit ripening, plants should be irrigated once a week, using 45 liters of water for each bush;
- watering is carried out under the root or in small grooves located around the bushes;
- after each watering, weed must be removed and the soil loosened in the beds - this facilitates the access of moisture and air to the roots;
- in early spring, the earth around each bush is dug up with the addition of 75 g of ammonium nitrate;
- at the flowering stage and 2 weeks before harvesting, the plants are fed with a liquid solution of bird droppings - 15 parts of water are taken for 1 part of the product;
- During the summer, several foliar top dressings can be carried out, which increase the yield and improve the taste of berries - a mixture of 10 liters of water and 2 g of boric acid is used for spraying;
- in the fall, under each bush make half a bucket of humus, 20 g of superphosphate, and half a glass of wood ash;
- so that the soil on the beds remains moist for a long time and does not overgrow with weeds, it is recommended to mulch the area of the trunk circle with peat.
Pest and Disease Control
When growing currants of this variety, it is necessary to periodically inspect the plants in order to detect signs of the appearance of diseases and pests.It is easiest to get rid of them at an early stage, until the infection has spread to all the bushes, causing serious damage to the crop.
With improper care, currants can be threatened by such diseases and pests:
- Powdery Mildew The disease affects the leaves of the plant, and then spreads to inflorescences and fruits. At the same time, a white powdery coating appears on the surface of the bush, which eventually becomes brown and leads to wilting of the green mass of the plant and mass shedding of unripe berries. All affected areas of the bush must be cut and destroyed, and the plantings of currants should be treated with Fitosporin.
- Anthracnose. This fungal infection often affects currants in mid-summer. The main symptom of the disease is small brown spots on the outer surface of the leaf plate. Gradually, the formations increase in size, and dark tubercles containing spores of the fungus are noticeable in their center. The green mass of the bush dries, and the yield of the plant decreases. For treatment, a 1% solution of Bordeaux fluid is used, and all leaves infected with the fungus are destroyed.
- Terry. This disease can make the currant bush infertile, and the main sign of damage is the deformation and reduction of leaf size. In this case, the leaf plate turns purple, the flower petals become long, and the plant does not bear fruit. The pests of this dangerous viral disease are insect pests, so insecticides must be used to fight the infection. It is impossible to cure a diseased plant, so it is dug up and burned.
- Gall leaf aphid. This pest is very small and lives on the leaves of white currant, sucking juice from them. Signs of damage are large swollen formations on the surface of the leaf plate, painted in reddish yellow. Insects multiply rapidly on the bush, causing the drying of the entire green mass of the plant, as a result of which currants can die. You can fight aphids with the help of the drug "Actellik", and all affected leaves must be destroyed.
- Glass Shaker. This small insect acts secretly, laying eggs on the surface of the currant shoots. The appeared small larvae bite into the branches and feed on wood, so the gardener will be able to notice their appearance only after the bush begins to dry out. Branches damaged by caterpillars need to be cut and burned, and the plant is treated with Iskra.
- Kidney tick. The pest affects the fruit buds of white currant, settling inside them. In this case, the kidney becomes round and swollen, and young leaves emerging from it have a deformed shape. Subsequently, the tick-affected kidneys die and crumble, and the yield of the bush decreases. To combat the tick, you need to trim the deformed and swollen kidneys, and then spray the currants with the Tedion preparation.
Any problem is easier to prevent than to cure, so when growing this variety, it is recommended to pay attention to preventive measures.
Important! For the prevention of diseases, white currants need to be treated with a 1% solution of Bordeaux fluid in early spring. Before flowering and after harvesting the berries.
- adhere to the recommended scheme for planting bushes;
- weed weed;
- comply with watering and dressing schedules;
- pruning the plant annually;
- remove fallen leaves and debris from the trunk circle;
- dig the soil around the bushes in the fall;
- plant currants in areas well lit by the sun.
Trimming and shaping a bush
Proper pruning of the bush allows you to get a plant of a beautiful and neat shape, increase productivity by improving the access of sunlight to all berries, and also prevent the appearance of diseases and pests.
The basic rules for pruning plants are listed below:
- spring pruning is carried out until the buds open, and in autumn, the bush is pruned at least 1 month before frost;
- in late March or early April, all dry and damaged branches are removed, and the remaining shoots are shortened by 5-6 buds;
- in September, you need to remove all shoots whose age exceeds 5 years, stunted and weak branches, as well as small shoots growing inside the bush;
- to eliminate excessive thickening of plantings, it is recommended to leave no more than 15 strong shoots on each plant;
- remove all branches on white currant only with a sharp knife or secateurs, so that the cut surface is as even as possible;
- all places of cuts are covered with garden varnish to protect the plant from harmful insects and fungal spores.
Fig. 1. Currant pruning: a - annual seedling; b - a biennial bush; c, d - shortening of shoots. Fig. 2. Currant bush before anti-aging pruning (a), after it (b) and pruning of a neglected bush (c).
In the Verdavia cultivar, the fruits are formed on shoots, whose age is 3-5 years, so older branches should be gradually cut to the root, allowing the growth of young shoots.
Due to its excellent winter hardiness, Verdavia currant bushes can withstand frosts down to –39 ° С. But in order for the plant to winter better and bear fruit well next year, it is necessary to pay attention to its proper preparation for wintering.To do this, it is recommended to perform the following actions:
- clean the area of the trunk circle from debris and plant debris;
- digging the soil around the bushes;
- mulch the surface of the earth around plants with a layer of fallen leaves or dry straw about 15 cm thick;
- after the snow falls, you can sprinkle a bush of currants on all sides.
Important! So that the inflorescences of Verdavia currants do not suffer from late May frosts, it is recommended to cover the bush with non-woven material during the spring cooling.
Harvesting and transportation of crops
With enough sunlight, all the berries on the bush of Verdavia currant ripen at the same time. This allows you to harvest in one approach, and when growing this variety for industrial purposes, often mechanized collection of fruits.
The main features of the collection and storage of fresh berries:
- fruits are removed from the bush in the early morning or evening in dry weather;
- the berries are not picked separately, but with whole brushes - so they better keep their shape and remain juicy;
- picking white currants is possible only after it has reached full maturity and painted in a golden yellow color;
- bunches of berries torn from the bush are placed in shallow trays with a volume of 2-3 liters so that the fruits do not crumple under their own weight;
- for storage and transportation only whole berries of the correct form with an elastic and hard surface are selected, and damaged and crushed fruits are used for processing;
- white currants should be transported immediately after collection, and the duration of transportation should not exceed 5-7 days;
- for fresh storage, unwashed and dry berries are placed in plastic bags in small portions and kept in the refrigerator at a temperature of about 0 ° C for up to 1 month;
- to increase the shelf life of fresh fruits, they can be frozen in the freezer - in this form, the product retains freshness for up to 1 year.
Did you know? In the XI century. currants were grown only on the territory of monasteries, so in those days it was called the “monastery berry”.
Verdavia white currant attracts the attention of gardeners with high yields and excellent taste of ripe berries. It is easy to grow this variety on your own site. To do this, you must comply with all the recommendations listed in the article and timely process plantings from diseases and pests.