A mainstay in European gardens and gaining popularity in North America, currants and gooseberries (Ribes species) make excellent jams, jellies, and dessert berries. The U.S. government at one time banned growing this group of ornamental and delicious fruits, because Ribes species contribute to a deadly white pine disease called white pine blister rust. Several states still restrict the sale and transport of Ribes, although disease-resistant varieties, which eliminate the problem, are now available.
Use currents and gooseberries as ornamental landscape shrubs. They bear attractive flowers and fruit, have maple-shaped leaves, and remain 3 to 4 feet high. Gooseberries do have thorns, however, so choose their planting
In spring, prune raspberry canes to 3 or 4 feet to encourage more fruit.
locations carefully. Plant the plants 3 to 4 feet apart in fertile, well-drained, compost-enriched soil with a pH of 6 to 7. Full sun to light shade is best. Most plants in this group are hardy to Zone 3, but spring frost may damage the early flowers. In very cold regions, plant on the north side of a building or other location that warms slowly in the spring to delay bloom. Gooseberries' high chill requirement (see Chapter 16) makes them unsuitable for climates with warm or very short winters and hot summers.
Currants, gooseberries, and jostaberries can pollinate themselves and don't need another variety to produce fruit. Prune the shrubs in late winter, and remove only canes older than 3 years. Thin younger canes, if necessary, to prevent crowding.
Was this article helpful?
Acai, Maqui And Many Other Popular Berries That Will Change Your Life And Health. Berries have been demonstrated to be some of the healthiest foods on the planet. Each month or so it seems fresh research is being brought out and new berries are being exposed and analyzed for their health giving attributes.