A tale of two gooseberry bushes

Alarmed by the increasingly sagging branches of one gooseberry bush, I headed out straight after breakfast and picked a load of unripe fruit to lighten the bush’s load. (Stewed with a little extra sugar, it’ll be fine.) There’s so much fruit that the centre has collapsed.

E516C3EC-2C46-4B47-9B8D-AA6D70627406In contrast, this is what remains of the other gooseberry bush.

It had never really thrived, and I had to cut off half the branches earlier this year as they were dead. The rest looked OK (albeit very lop-sided) and had fruit, but a couple of days ago the leaves started to wilt, despite regular watering. Given that a neighbouring bush died two years ago and all that remained of that root system was a single stick, I feared the worst and consulted Dr Google. It sounded like verticillium wilt, which spreads upwards from the roots through the water-conducting tissue. Even if my diagnosis is wrong, I’m concerned for the other fruit trees. So I dug out the bush (the roots had some lesions on them) and wiped the tools I’d used with white spirit. The little patch will be returned to the lawn.

If I really need more gooseberries I can plant a bush elsewhere.

And now I’m looking at the plum tree adjacent and wondering if it’s looking a bit peaky.

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About aides mémoires

This is a chronological list of things I have seen, places I have visited, and thoughts that have wandered through the space between my ears. A reading group of one; an art appreciation society limited by my preferences and prejudices; opera criticism by one who knows nothing about the subject.
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