Versailles currant - description and characteristics of the variety
White currants enjoy stable popularity among domestic gardeners. The fruits of this plant are less likely to cause allergies than the brighter berries. They have a refreshing sweet and sour taste and delicate aroma that are significantly different from the black and red currant varieties.
White currants are more demanding to care for and less productive than black or red ones. However, among the varieties of white berries, there are more hardy and productive varieties. One of them is Versailles.
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Description of the white currant variety Versailles
White currant (ribe niveum) is a rather old variety, bred in France in the 19th century. Only in 1959 was the plant entered into the Russian State Register. It is recommended to grow in regions with a temperate climate, but it is suitable for cultivation in the south and even in the north of Russia.
Despite the presence of many more modern varieties, Versailles white currant is not inferior to them in many respects and even surpasses many varieties and hybrids bred today.
Description of the White Versailles:
- Bush. Erect. Medium-sized. Height varies in the range of 1.2-1.5 m. The bushes are spreading, emit a large number of shoots. The branches are thin, but strong and flexible enough. The root system is developed. Most of the roots are horizontal, located at a depth of 40 cm underground and grow beyond the crown. The central root is powerful, goes underground to a depth of 1 m.
- Leaves. Wide, cordate at the base, with five lobe dissections. The edges are serrated. The teeth themselves are wide and obtuse. The seamy side of the leaf plates has a slight pubescence. The color of the leaves is dark green with a barely noticeable bluish tint.
- Bloom. Inflorescences are collected in long sparse clusters with petioles. The flowers are saucer-shaped, medium-sized, yellow-white. Pedicels are long and straight. No pubescence, glossy shine.
- Berries. Large, round, aligned, collected in long brushes. The weight of each berry varies between 0.7-1.3 g. The shade is creamy. The fruits are translucent, bones are visible through the juicy pulp. The taste is sweet and sour, rich. The skin is transparent, thin but firm.
- Ripening terms... Early ripe.
- Immunity. Possesses high resistance to powdery mildew. Has no immunity to anthracnose. Immunity to other fungal diseases middle.
- Resistance to negative environmental factors. Has high frost resistance.
- Transportability. High. The dense skin allows the fruits to not wrinkle during long-term transportation.
- Productivity. High. On average, 3-4 kg of berries are harvested from a bush.
White currant is distinguished by the amicability of ripening berries. The entire crop is removed from the bush at once.
Note! In the berries of the Versailles white currant, up to 18% of dry matter, 7.5% of sugars are found. The acidity of the fruit is 2.3%. 100 g of the product accounts for 38 g of ascorbic acid.
Pros and cons
The Versailles white currant is popular with both beginner and experienced gardeners. Its main advantages are presented in the list:
- High frost resistance. This makes it possible to grow Versailles white in all regions of our country;
- Self-pollination. The plant will bear fruit even if there are no other white currant bushes on the site.
- The presence of immunity to powdery mildew.Reviews of gardeners indicate that currants are not susceptible to many other fungal diseases.
- High productivity.
- Early ripeness.
The disadvantages include:
- susceptibility to anthracnose;
- excessive spreading of the bush;
- exactingness to the composition of the soil.
Advice! Despite the fact that the variety is considered self-pollinated, the highest yields are observed when there are several bushes (better than different varieties) of white currants on the site.
Versailles white reproduces only vegetatively. Use cuttings, layering or dividing the bush. The technology for obtaining planting material does not differ from other varieties.
In nurseries and markets, ready-made seedlings are usually sold. They take root quickly and take root well in a permanent place.
For the Versailles currant, it is important to choose the right place. It should be located in the most sunlit and protected from the wind area of the garden. Groundwater should not get too close to the surface.
Note! With insufficient lighting, the yield of the variety decreases. The berries become small and sour.
Currants thrive in nutritious loamy soils, but they can grow in any soils. When planting in sandy soils, you will need more intensive feeding.
Before planting currants, the site is dug up and cleaned of weeds. A soil with neutral acidity works best. If the indicators are increased, dry lime or ash is added.
Currants are planted in early spring or after leaf fall. The wells are prepared 2-3 weeks before planting.
- The holes are dug 40 cm deep and 50 cm in diameter. There must be at least 1.5 m of free space between the plants.
- The soil removed from the hole is mixed with 5 kg of rotted manure, 50 g of superphosphate and 20 g of potassium sulfate. If desired, superphosphate with potassium is replaced with 1 kg of ash.
- The soil with fertilizers is thoroughly mixed and left near the hole until planting.
Step-by-step instructions for planting and choosing a seedling
It is important to choose high quality and healthy planting material. There should be no marks on the seedling diseases and infections, suspicious stains and plaque. The root system should be well developed, free of dry and dense areas, moist at the cut. The branches should not be dry. The greens should be bright with good turgor.
It is better to buy seedlings with a closed root system (located in an earthen coma) - they take root faster. If seedlings with an open root system were purchased, they are soaked in a light pink solution of potassium permanganate and a root formation stimulator before planting. If the roots are long, they are shortened by a third.
Step-by-step landing instructions:
- A 5 cm layer of drainage is poured onto the bottom of the pit (fine gravel, expanded clay, shell rock). An earthen lump is formed in the center.
- The shank is set on an earthen lump at an angle of 45 degrees. The roots are evenly distributed over the mound.
- The hole is covered with nutritious soil mixture so that the root collar is deepened by 7-10 cm.
- After planting, the soil around the plant is compacted. Then pour 2 buckets of warm water under the root.
- If the soil has settled, then more soil is added. A layer of mulch (humus, peat, straw) is poured around the bush.
- The top of the seedling is pruned, leaving 5-6 healthy buds.
To achieve the highest yield possible, it is important to provide the shrub with proper care. Versailles currant is less whimsical than many other varieties with white berries. Moreover, it is more demanding than black and red currants.
White currant Versailles needs regular care. The list contains basic rules:
- Watering. White currants are demanding for watering. In a normal summer, the bush is watered three times a week, each time using 10 liters of water. If the summer is dry, then the currants are watered every day. In the rainy season, watering is stopped.The soil is moistened with warm, settled water, in the morning or evening, when the sun is not active.
- Loosening and weeding. The soil around the currants is loosened after each watering or precipitation. In the process of loosening, weeds are removed.
- Top dressing. In the first and second year after planting, there is enough fertilizer applied to the soil removed from the hole. Then they begin to make in early spring a solution of 10 liters of water and 50 g of urea, and after the release of the crop, a mixture of 10 liters of water, 0.5 liters of chicken manure (or 1 kg of rotted manure), 50 g of superphosphate and 20 g of potassium sulfate are poured under the bush. In summer, the bush is sprayed with a mixture of 10 liters of water, 5 g of potassium permanganate, 3 g of boric acid and 35 g of copper sulfate.
- Formation. The first formative pruning is carried out one year after planting. Of all the skeletal branches formed, 3-4 of the strongest are chosen, the rest are cut off. In this way, annual pruning is carried out. The crown will form in 4-5 years. The plant by this time should have 16-18 branches. Then I cut off 7-8 year old branches, leaving replacement shoots.
- Sanitary pruning. Dry and damaged shoots, branches spreading along the ground are cut annually. Shoots are cut out.
- Anti-aging pruning. If the currants began to give few fruits, then it's time to apply anti-aging procedures. For this, currant branches are cut by 2/3.
- Wintering. In order for the currant to survive the winter safely, its branches are tied with twine. A 10-15 cm layer of mulch (compost or humus) is poured under the bush. In snowy winters, it is enough to cover the plants with snow. If there is no snow, then the currants are covered with agrofibre.
Diseases and pests
White currant of Versailles is rarely affected by powdery mildew and terry. According to gardeners, the variety is susceptible to anthracnose. A diseased plant breaks with brown spots, which gradually coalesce and increase in size. This leads to disruption of photosynthesis, falling leaves and fruits, drying out of shoots.
If the disease has already affected the shrub, then it is sprayed with fungicides. Before this, all diseased parts of the plant are removed.
It is important to prevent diseases. The list contains basic rules:
- Preventive treatments. It is carried out in the spring, before the buds swell. The bush is sprayed with Bordeaux liquid or copper sulfate solution. It is recommended to spray after prolonged rains.
- Cleaning the garden. In the fall, after the fall of leaves, they remove and burn all the fallen leaves, dried branches. In the summer, all weeds around the plant are removed.
- Disinfection. Disinfecting soil, planting material, garden tools.
- Top dressing. A plant that receives a sufficient amount of nutrients is more successful in resisting diseases and pests.
- Compliance with watering rules... Waterlogging, as well as drying out the soil, is considered favorable conditions for the development of the fungus.
- Sanitary pruning... It is on dry and damaged branches that the development of a fungal infection usually begins. Their timely removal is necessary.
- Slicing processing garden pitch.
Currants are affected not only by infections, but also by pests. To protect the plant from them, the above disinfection rules are observed, and all fruit and berry plants on the site are inspected every week.
Versailles white berries ripen in late July or early August. When ripe, they do not crumble from the bush, so many gardeners wait until all the berries are ripe and collect them in one go.
The currants are removed directly on the hands. Store in a refrigerator in a plastic bag or closed container for 1-2 weeks.
The degree of ripeness is determined by the taste and how easily the berry separates from the stem. In ripe fruits, the bones are clearly visible through the pulp.
Reviews of the Versailles white currant are mostly positive. Most gardeners with this variety recommend starting their acquaintance with the culture.
Irina, Moscow: “My mother also planted the Versailles white currant at the dacha.From that first bush, we received many seedlings, which we planted on our site and gave to our friends. Since then, we've tried many of the more modern white currant varieties, but Versailles remains a favorite. He does not shed fruits during cold snaps and in a rainy summer he does without watering. All I do is cut off the weak shoots and feed them twice a year. "
Alexander, Rostov “The Versailles white currant is my favorite. I like its large fruits on long brushes. Juicy, sweet with a slight sourness. Demanding to care, but if everything is done on time, it won't take much time. I apply an ash solution with chicken droppings in early spring and September. I water only if the soil is very dry. There was a year when she fell ill with anthracnose. Since then, I have been spraying with copper sulfate in the spring and after long rains ”.
The Versailles white currant is a French variety bred back in the 19th century. Differs in frost resistance, high yield, large-fruited, resistance to many diseases. It has only two significant drawbacks - lack of immunity to anthracnose and increased branching of the bush.
It is not difficult to take care of Vernissal white currant. The main thing is to ensure timely watering and feeding, to carry out formation and sanitary pruning annually.