Harvesting the blackcurrants.

It’s been a busy week here. Miss C has been away on a Guide International Jamboree and I’ve used the time to decorate a couple of the rooms without the worry of a pre-teen accidentally leaning in the paint.
She was home today and to kill a couple of hours while I waited for the coach I kept busy with picking the blackcurrants. A job I’ve been meaning to do all week.

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Most of the currants have been a bit of a non event this year. Last year the bushes were huge and I ended up digging out the redcurrant bush and moving it to the bottom of the garden. We didn’t eat them anyway and the bottom is the chickens garden and they loved them. I intended moving the white as well but never got around to it.
A few weeks ago both the white and black bushes were overgrown and I worried the fruit was too covered to ripen.

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I took a gamble and chopped off their tops to expose the fruit more.

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The white currants have ripened and been eaten by the birds. I’ve been pruning them by cutting off the branches of fruit and giving the whole lot to the chickens!

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I’ve cared for the blackcurrants more carefully as we love them. I thought my pegs to keep the net from blowing off in the wind was inspired. Clever me!

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I picked the first bowl full carefully. Leaving the unripe ones for next time.
Then I started to lose heart, there were just so many and the sun was beating down. I was hot and running out of time.

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As you prune blackcurrants after picking I decided to half the work. Prune them now and pick the berries off while standing upright in the shade. I waste some that way but save so much time.

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I was able to have them washed and in the freezer in minutes. I’ve taken to keeping the ice trays in both freezers empty and permanently lined with greaseproof paper. That way I can just throw any extras from the garden straight in.  I open freeze everything and will then pack into bags when solid. That way I can use them whenever I want throughout the winter.

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