Ribes rubrum is a deciduous Shrub growing to 1.2 m (4ft).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from April to May, and the seeds ripen from July to August. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Bees. The plant is self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.
Ribes rubrum is an unarmed, spreading, deciduous shrub; it usually grows 100 - 150cm tall but can reach 300cm.
Red currants are often cultivated for their edible fruit in the temperate zone, especially in northern Europe and Asia. They are grown both commercially and on a garden scale. The plant also has a range of medicinal uses.
The fresh leaves contain the toxin hydrogen cyanide, though details of quantities are not given]. This substance is found in several foods, including almonds. In small quantities, hydrogen cyanide has been shown to stimulate respiration and improve digestion, it is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer. In excess, however, it can cause respiratory failure and even death.
This plant might be poisonous