The Q&A Archives: Transplanting a Currant Bush

Question: Is is feasable to transplant an old currant bush? Do they handle it well? How large is the root structure. Are there any tricks or tips? I have one and can not decide if I should move it or just get rid of it. I am in the second year of a three year pruning and I did not see much improvement from the begining. Now that the berries are gone the plant seems to be regressing with the leaves turning yellowish. Is that normal?

Answer: If I were you, I'd start with a fresh new currant bush. Once they've grown that large, they're hard to transplant. Generally, a plant's root system matches the size of the crown, so it may be more trouble than it's worth just to dig the new planting hole! Since you're nearly through the 3-year renovation, maybe you'll want to take it through one more year before you decide.

Currants lose their leaves early in the more southern reaches of their range, so if you've had a spell of hot, dry weather, it may be the reason for the sad looking leaves.
Though they aren't heavy feeders, currants do appreciate an annual addition of organic matter (compost, aged manure), a few pounds of soybean meal and a cup of greensand. If you want to check out some good varieties, request a catalog from Miller Nurseries, 5060 West Lake Rd., Canandaigua, NY 14424, ph# 800/836-9630). Enjoy!

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