We are pleased to once again be able to offer you many exciting novelties in the area of our shrub berry young plants for the upcoming 2020 spring season. A lot has happened especially with the Ribes, i.e. the gooseberry and currant young plants. Here we have been able to considerably expand our assortment with varieties from the innovative Lubera breeding programme. On the one hand, our sister company is one of the few companies in the world still engaged in the breeding of gooseberries and on the other hand, these varieties have been specially bred and selected for the demands of the home garden. The varieties from the Lubera breeding programme are characterised above all by the outstanding health of the plants. However, they also have a convincing flavour with a lot of aroma as well as a very balanced ratio of sweetness and sourness.
New gooseberries are needed
Picture: new gooseberry young plants
As described above, Lubera is one of the few companies in the world where professional gooseberry breeding is carried out. The aim of this breeding programme is to obtain the most disease-tolerant or resistant gooseberry varieties possible in all colours. There are two different breeding lines: one is the Easycrisp® series, which are almost thornless, and the other is the Crispa® series. The Crispa® series is characterised by spined varieties which, however, have a particularly good aroma. We would especially like to introduce these new Crispa® varieties to you.
Crispa® Darling® – with its bright red and medium-sized fruits is the exquisite gooseberry in our range. This variety is the best Crispa® variety in terms of flavour with a very fruity/berry aroma and lots of sweetness when fully ripe.
Picture: fruits of gooseberry variety Crispa® Darling®
Crispa® Goldling® – convinces with its particularly large fruits that have an intense mustard-yellow colouration paired with golden veins. The fruits are also very juicy and have a pleasantly sweet taste.
Picture: fruits of gooseberry variety Crispa® Goldling®
Crispa® Greenling® – is the green, fruity variety in our range. It convinces by its very large fruits that have a beautiful, light green colour and a juicy, aromatic flavour, paired with fine, pleasant acidity.
Picture: fruits of gooseberry variety Crispa® Greenling®
Mildew tolerance for gooseberries
In contrast to blackcurrants, it has not yet been possible to breed absolutely mildew-resistant varieties of gooseberries. The resistance of the tolerant varieties is not based on absolute immunity but on a speed of growth and hardening of the shoots and leaves, which largely excludes mildew (but does not completely eliminate it). This tolerance has been tested in our Lubera® breeding programme for at least seven years in the field and is meanwhile much better than with old tolerant varieties such as Invicta. However, it is important to talk about tolerance and not resistance.
Blackcurrants – a breakthrough in home garden breeding
Picture: currant breeding
Just like the gooseberries described above, the new blackcurrants are also introduced from the breeding programme of our sister company Lubera. One of the main focuses in the selection of these varieties was on outstanding plant health, combined with significantly larger fruits and an excellent flavour. However, the breeding process is far from complete here and so there will be a lot more to do in the coming years, especially with regard to fruit size.
As far as resistance is concerned, the progress with the new cassis varieties is almost breath-taking: 15 or 30 years ago it was quite normal that blackcurrants had almost no leaves at some point in September. The new varieties have dark green leaves and are beautiful until late autumn. In contrast to gooseberries, we can also speak here of actual mildew resistance.
Cassissima® Blackbells® – is an important breakthrough in currant breeding. With this variety, significant improvements have been achieved in three properties. Blackbells® has significantly longer strings and at the same time much larger berries. These berries are also significantly sweeter than most conventional varieties.
Picture: fruits of the black currant Cassissima® Blackbells®
Cassissima® Black Marble® – has the largest fruits of all blackcurrants from the Lubera® breeding programme, if not all varieties. Black Marble® is also a very early ripening variety. At the time of harvest, the strings are no longer taken off the bush as a whole, but the berries are picked individually. The typical cassis aroma and high sugar content make this variety a particularly aromatic, sweet fruit that can be enjoyed directly from the shrub.
Picture: fruits of the black currant Cassissima® Black Marble®
The world novelty ‘Black'n'Red®’ – blackcurrants with ornamental shrub character
The Black'n'Red® currant series brings a new quality to shrub berries: the blackcurrant, this Cinderella of the berry garden, becomes a veritable beauty. The ornamental value of this plant consists of unexpectedly dark, almost wine-red coloured foliage, which, however, only really takes on a strong colour after the harvest. The leaves first sprout green in the spring and around 24 June, and then they darken with increasing exposure to sunlight. Black'n'Red® currants should therefore always be planted in full sunlight in order to ensure an ideal colouring of the leaves. The first variety that we can offer you as young plants is Black'n'Red® Premiere®.
Picture: Black’n’Red® Premiere® at the Hampton Court Flower Show
Black'n'Red® Premiere® – is the first available variety from the new Black'n'Red® series. It combines the advantages of a blackcurrant with sweet, delicious fruits and a high mildew tolerance with highly decorative dark/wine-red foliage. Black'n'Red® Premiere® has a comparatively late ripening time and a distinct but mild cassis aroma.
Picture: fruits of Black'n'Red® Premiere®