Plant at any time between
November and early March when there is no frost.
But where the ground is heavy and not well drained,
early spring planting is better. In any case,
gooseberries do best in light soil. Where growing
the more bushy varieties plant 120cm (4ft) apart
in rows, with the same distance between them,
for a fully grown plant will cover an area of
just under a square metre (square yard). Those
of a more compact, upright habit may be planted
90cm (3ft) apart. They will not crop quite so
heavily but it means that more plants may be planted
in the same area of ground.
During the first three or four years, little or
no pruning is needed. Afterwards, begin to remove
some of the old wood and thin out the shoots if
there is over-crowding, so that the plants do
not grow into each other. Those of spreading and
somewhat drooping habit should have the shoots
cut back to an upwards bud to counteract this
tendency. Those of upright habit are cut back
at an outwards bud in order to prevent overcrowding
at the centre.