Blackcurrant Ilya Muromets: main characteristics of the variety
Modern selection of blackcurrant is aimed not only at improving the taste of berries, increasing their size and increasing productivity, but also at strengthening the immunity of the culture. The high-yielding large-fruited variety Ilya Muromets is a vivid example of a crop that perfectly resists the characteristic diseases of currant, which makes it possible to minimize the use of chemicals and get more environmentally friendly crops.
Description of blackcurrant variety Ilya Muromets
This berry bush is characterized by one and a half meter growth and powerful thick shoots. Weak branching and sprawling, as well as the simultaneous ripening of the crop make the variety suitable for industrial cultivation in a mechanized way.
Judging by the reviews of gardeners who have been cultivating currants for a long time, it is highly resistant to damage by terry, powdery mildew and bud mites. The hybrid can withstand both dry periods and severe winter frosts and is offered for cultivation in the middle lane. Fruits are intended for universal use.
Black currant Ilya Muromets was bred by natural scientist K.P. Solovyova after a long 30-year work at the Moscow Society of Nature Testers from Yunkor and Goryanka varieties, which in turn was obtained from the Altai Giant and Goliath.
Did you know? Only 20 blackcurrant fruits contain a daily dose of vitamin C.
Appearance, characteristics of berries, ripening time, yield
Large berries of the bush have a dessert taste with a slight acidity and intense currant aroma. Located on a long, even brush, they do not crumble after ripening. The weight of the fetus is on average 1.8 g, reaching 3 g under good conditions.
Medium-late ripening involves harvesting in the second half of July. The maximum fruiting occurs at the age of five and is 4-5 kg per bush. By the content of vitamins and minerals necessary for the body, this berry is a leader among vegetables, fruits, and other berries.
The list of vitamins also contains beta-carotene, vitamins K and group B. The chemical composition includes minerals potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and iron.
The berry contains a large amount of volatile, organic acids, pectin, tannins and essential oils. In this case, the calorie content of currants is quite low and amounts to 38 kcal per 100 g.
Advantages and disadvantages of the variety
The growing popularity of Ilya Muromets is due to the significant advantages that this variety of berry shrub possesses.
- high resistance to diseases and adverse climatic conditions;
- high productivity;
- large fruits;
- friendship ripening;
- resistance to shedding;
- low tendency to thicken;
- does not require garter;
- suitable for industrial cultivation.
- more sharp taste of fruits in comparison with other grades;
- not everyone likes tall bush.
The unpretentiousness of the shrub makes it easy to cope with its cultivation even to a novice gardener, subject to simple rules and recommendations. Agricultural technology includes standard techniques, taking into account some features of the variety.
Seat selection and landing
For planting blackcurrant, nutritious sandy loamy and loamy soils with a groundwater level of up to 1 m are suitable. In the swampy lowlands, the shrub grows poorly. To ensure maximum loading of berries under the culture, areas well lit by the sun should be allocated.
In order to prevent diseases, exclude places where other types of currants, gooseberries or raspberries previously grew. Autumn is considered the best time for planting, as spring seedlings take root worse and slower. In mid-September, they dig the soil under the beds and prepare holes 40 × 40 cm in increments of 1.5–2 m.
Important! Despite the upright stems of the variety and a slight tendency to thicken, it is not recommended to tighten the plantings of Ilya Muromets.
1-2 pails of humus or compost and 1 liter of wood ash are introduced into each pit and left for 2 weeks for shrinkage. Instead of ash, you can use 200 g of superphosphate and 60 g of potassium sulfate per bush. Prepared seedlings should have 3 or more skeletal branches and well-developed, not dried out, fibrous roots. The presence of signs of disease or damage by pests is unacceptable.
Description of landing technology:
- prune seedlings from damaged branches and roots;
- arrange the plants in the holes so that the root neck after planting is 6-8 cm below the soil level;
- gently spread the roots;
- fall asleep to half depth with earth, slightly tamping;
- pour a bucket of water;
- fill the hole completely with soil;
- make a circular hole around the center of the seedling;
- water again abundantly;
- mulch the surface of the soil with peat or sawdust;
- trim the stems to 4–6 buds.
Blackcurrant is a moisture-loving crop and needs additional irrigation to form a high-quality crop. During the season it is necessary to carry out at least 4 waterings: at the beginning of the growing season, during the formation of the ovaries, during the filling of berries and after fruiting.
If the autumn turned out to be dry, additionally water the shrub in the mid-end of October to protect the roots from freezing. 3-5 water buckets are made under each bush, soaking the soil to a depth of 1.5 m.
The roots of tall Ilya Muromets quickly deplete the soil, and to support the ability of plants to form a new crop annually, they need to be fed.
Fertilizers in liquid form are preferred, which are applied together with irrigation during the indicated main vegetation periods. In the spring, starting from the second year after planting, urea of 40-50 g per bush is used.
In the fourth year, they reduce the amount of nitrogen fertilizer to 25–40 g and divide it into 2 doses. During the season, 10–15 g of superphosphate or 100–150 g of wood ash are applied under the plants.
After harvesting, nitrogen components are completely excluded from the composition of fertilizers, as they delay the maturation of wood. It is recommended to alternate industrial mineral mixtures with organics. The source of nitrogen are solutions of mullein or bird droppings in a ratio of 1:10 and 1:20, respectively.
They use top dressing at the rate of 1 bucket per adult and 1/2 bucket per young plant. Nitrogen-free compost and humus are used throughout the season, mulching the soil under the bushes with a layer of 1 cm.
Did you know? Most people know only black, red and white currants, although in nature there are more than 150 species of this culture of various colors.
Pest and Disease Control
Thanks to the genetic resistance of Ilya Muromets to the most dangerous enemies of culture - powdery mildew and buds, this variety becomes very attractive for cultivation. In cases of damage to other types of infections, shrubs are sprayed with copper-containing preparations, and in case of insect attack, industrial systemic fungicides are used. For preventive purposes, plantings in the early spring and late autumn are treated with malathion, Bordeaux liquid or a solution of colloidal sulfur.
Trimming and shaping a bush
One of the common mistakes when growing blackcurrant is the lack of regular pruning of shrubs when leaving. In early spring or late autumn, it is necessary to remove dried, frozen and damaged branches from the plant for sanitary purposes.
Young plants need formative pruning, in which the optimal number of shoots is achieved to achieve maximum yield with the manifestation of all varietal characteristics.
Until the 5–6th year of life, the bushes leave 2-3 of the healthiest branches of the current season, and the rest are cut to prevent thickening. Thickened plants often get sick, their crop quality is sharply reduced, and their life span is reduced.
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).
The remaining shoots of currant Ilya Muromets branch weakly, so they are cut to 1 / 4–1 / 2 of the length so that the bush does not grow bare. Subsequently, all branches older than 5–6 years old are cut at the base, and their productivity decreases, and they are replaced by young shoots.
To prepare the garden for winter, it is necessary to clean all plant debris in which infectious agents and pests can nest, and carry out preventive spraying. To access the roots of the air, the soil around the bushes should be loosened if the soil is light, or dug up if heavy.
Important! Currant does not tolerate damage to the small roots that feed the plant, so the soil under the crown should be cultivated to a depth of not more than 6-8 cm.
After winter watering and top dressing, the soil under the plants is mulched with 10 cm of peat, compost or straw to preserve moisture. The frost resistance of the variety Ilya Muromets is sufficient for adult plants to winter successfully, and it is better to cover young seedlings for the winter with lapnik and rake in with snow.
Harvesting and transportation of crops
Thanks to the dry separation, the berries of the variety have good indicators of keeping quality and transportability. The simultaneous ripening of the fruits of currant Ilya Muromets allows you to harvest in one step. Cleaning is carried out from mid-July to early August in dry weather in the morning or evening in the absence of dew.
As a container, use shallow trays, baskets or boxes with a thin layer of berries in them. The fruits intended for transportation must be removed at the stage of technical ripeness, when the skin is still brown and has not acquired an intense black color.
Ripe black currants retain their quality in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks. To do this, the collected berries are sorted, discarding damaged ones, and packed in 0.5 kg plastic bags. When frozen, the shelf life of fresh fruits increases to 3 months.
Variety Ilya Muromets, which has excellent vitality and quality indicators of berries, has declared itself one of the best representatives of blackcurrant in modern selection. Deprived of the majority of the shortcomings of its predecessors, it is a worthy candidate for cultivation both in large farms and in private summer cottages.