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Discussion Starter #1
I have some currants "sprigs I guess is the word" coming soon. My plan is to use a couple of metal horse troughs for the first year. I want them off the ground and in controlled soil. I'm going to set the trough up on bricks (solid around to keep the snakes out) and drill drainage holes in the bottom of each.
My thought is to keep them in good soil and to be able to move them to more or less sun as needed with my tractor. I know they won't bear until the second or even third year but that's okay.

I was planning to get a load of top soil, some potting soil and to load up a bunch of cow manure from my pasture and mix it all up this weekend. The currants are supposed to be here in a few weeks (2-4 I think).

Am I setting up for failure or success? I don't want to waste this order trying to figure it out.
 

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Grow currants in part to full sun. If you live in areas with very hot summers, plant currants in partial shade or on a north or northeast-facing slope. They prefer cool, moist and well-drained soil. Avoid planting them in hot, dry sites or sites that have poorly drained, wet soils. Plant them in an area that has good air movement and circulation to guard against fungal diseases.

Prepare the planting site. Spread a two inch layer of compost on the surface of the planting area. Dig this into the soil by turning it over with a garden spade. Rake the surface of the soil smooth when finished.

Dig a hole that is twice the size of the root ball. Use a garden digging fork to loosen the soil in the bottom of the hole. Back fill the hole so that when planted the currant will be growing slightly lower than it was in its nursery pot.

Cut back the young shoots of the currant bush so they are 6-10 inches long.
Plant currant bushes in prepared planting holes four to five feet apart in rows six to eight feet apart. When planting, place them so that they are set slightly deeper into the ground than they were in their nursery pot. Back fill the hole with soil and firm down the surface gently but firmly with your foot.

Water newly planted currant bushes by laying a hose near the base of the plant with a slow trickle of water. Leave the hose for 60 to 90 minutes, until the soil is moistened to the depth of the root ball.

Mulch the area around the bush with two to four inches of straw, wood chips or sawdust. Replenish mulch to the same depth every spring.

Prune currants in early spring, before new growth begins, starting the first spring after planting. The first year you prune, remove all but six to eight healthy shoots. The second year you prune, leave four to five one-year-old shoots and three to four two-year-old shoots. Every spring thereafter, prune so the plant contains three to four shoots that are one-year-old, three or four that are two years old, and three or four that are three years old. Remove any canes older than that and also remove all but the strongest three or four brand new canes.
 

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I would suggest planting them directly in the ground. They do not get big enough the first year to be a problem transplanting if you needed to move them. Currants are also very easy to propagate by cuttings, so next fall/winter, you can take cuttings from the initial planting and try them other locations if you thought they might do better.

I have red/white/black currants and the red and white seem more tolerant of part shade than my black currants.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
"Grow currants in part to full sun. If you live in areas with very hot summers, plant currants in partial shade or on a north or northeast-facing slope. They prefer cool, moist and well-drained soil. Avoid planting them in hot, dry sites or sites that have poorly drained, wet soils. Plant them in an area that has good air movement and circulation to guard against fungal diseases."

I plan to put them on a East/Northeast side of a group of oak and pecan trees. They will get good sun until about 1330.
Air movement? yeah... I'm in Oklahoma. The air ALWAYS moves here. That part is well covered.

"I would suggest planting them directly in the ground. They do not get big enough the first year to be a problem transplanting if you needed to move them. Currants are also very easy to propagate by cuttings, so next fall/winter, you can take cuttings from the initial planting and try them other locations if you thought they might do better."

I don't have the best soil, just Oklahoma red clay dirt. So that is why I wanted to start them off in a planter (trough). That and the ability to move to another location if I need to if I think they are getting too much sun (I doubt the issue will be NOT ENOUGH sun... ).
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Snakes... I hate snakes. We have rattlesnakes, copperheads and water moccasins in out area. Just have to be careful around the area and not put your hands and feet in places without looking first. A shaded area such as an elevated trough or planter would make a perfect hiding spot for one to crawl into and then make it's presence known painfully.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Okay... changed the plan a bit but it stays the same really. Currants are shipping now. Went to Tractor Supply and bought a "raised garden" planter. It looks like a small metal water trough and it has a stand that is about 2.5' tall. Actually looks pretty nice but will be easier to move than a larger trough. Already had drain holes too. So we dug up some soil/dirt/mulch from an area that the previous owners had used as a compost area. Then mixed in a few big shovel fulls of good potting soil. I have it outside in a shaded area acclimating to the temps. As soon as the currants arrive we'll get started on this. I know it will take two years for them to produce but that's okay. At least momma will feel like her "treasures" are coming.
 

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Snakes... I hate snakes. We have rattlesnakes, copperheads and water moccasins in out area. Just have to be careful around the area and not put your hands and feet in places without looking first. A shaded area such as an elevated trough or planter would make a perfect hiding spot for one to crawl into and then make it's presence known painfully.
I like to have one of my dogs about for spotting snakes. One of them is really good for noting water moccasins. If walking and my white english farm dogs see one they dodge out of the way alerting me. Sometimes they will also bark at it, but they instinctively avoid closing with them.
This last one was a yearling that was spotted by little guy as he was running. I saw him leap to the side and walked over and saw this little fellow about the end of last october. I could not make out its head very well due to the poor light and its camouflage so i blasted its body with several +P+ 9's ripping it up good. Still alive with a severed spine.

 
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