Ribes rubrum

Scientific name: Ribes rubrum


Common names: “Red currant”

Plant Type: Deciduous shrub


Zone: 3-9

Light: Full sun – part shade

Exposure: Shelter from strong winds and frost pockets

Soil: Organically rich fertile soil

Moisture: Evenly moist – average well drained


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Plant Size: H 5-7′ W 3-5′

Leaf and Stem shape: Large, soft green, palmately lobed leaves

Flower: Insignificant, pale green flowers followed by red, juicy edible, round red-white fruitRelated image

Pruning: Once established, prune out stems older than 3 years in favour of younger shoots to increase fruit yield

Maintenance: Low – medium, enjoys a good organic mulch over the root zone

Landscape use: Hedge, wildlife garden, edible

Propagate: By cuttings

Pests & Disease: In wet conditions they are susceptible to anthracnose, powdery mildew, and fungal leaf spot, also all Ribes spp. are alternate hosts for a rust which affects white pines

Comments: Delicious edible berries, red fruiting species attract many birds while species bearing white berries may be overlooked,  avoid planting currants in locations where white pines are growing unless rust-immune cultivars are used, currently banned in 14 states to prevent the spread of white pine rust, plants are self fertile

Cultivars: ~AGM winning culinary cvs’:

R. r. ‘Red Lake’ – Sweet, dark red berries

R. r. ‘Jonkheer Van Tets’ – Heavy crops of large berries

R. r. ‘Stanza’ – Compact shrub with heavy crops

R. r. ‘White Grapes’ – Large shrub producing white berries

Image result for ribes rubrum


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