Berry Bushes – experience from Lebyodushki Kin Domain 22.07.2020 13:26:50
During the very first year of settling down on our land, we bought two berry bushes - red currant and gooseberry.
We initially chose a plot of land without trees and bushes, and therefore it was not so easy for those berry bushes. They were roasted in the sun, blown by pretty strong wind. It was not an easy growing for them, but mostly suffering.
At that time, we regularly covered a part of the garden with a thick layer of mowed grass, approximately knee-high. This is how we prepared the ground for future plantings. Later we assigned that part of the garden to the berries area. It was precisely after transplanting our two bushes to that place that they really began to grow. Now they give more and more crops with every year.
Also two years ago we bought new varieties of currants and gooseberries in the nursery and planted them on Holzer beds. For those of you who are not familiar with that, let me please explain what it is. In fact, such beds are called hilly beds, but they were invented by an Austrian farmer called Sepp Holzer. Which is why we call them like that.
Here is the main principle of those beds – you dig a hole, 1 or 2 shovel-blades deep, in the length and width of the future bed. Then you fill it with old logs, lay branches there, then a layer of hay or straw, put cardboards and other organic materials. Then you cover it all with the earth that you previously dug out, you form a hill - 1.5 meters high (we actually had about 80 cm), and there it is for mulching.
For several years those hilly beds worked perfectly for us. We grew excellent harvests of pumpkin and zucchini there without watering or fertilization. But later we noticed that the outcome was no so good any more, and we decided to plant raspberries and other berry bushes on those hilly beds.
I must say that the bushes that we planted there were pretty small. Each one was just a lonely twig. Two years have passed and just look at them now!
They almost caught up in the size with the bushes planted in 2011-2015! And we already began to harvest from those bushes.
We can make a conclusion here that for good growth and good harvests of berry bushes, even in a clean field, it is necessary to make hilly beds for them with pieces of wood put in the ground, or, at least, constantly mulch the area where they grow with a thick layer (about knee-high). We do not water the bushes AT ALL.
Here are our observations and that is our experience with berry bushes. In a garden where apple and pear trees grow, the result is not so encouraging. And why? Because we did not mulch the area there. We must correct the situation, otherwise we will not see the harvest there for a very long time.
Lebyodushki Kin Domain
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