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Mountain Currant

Ribes alpinum

  • Name also: Alpine Currant
  • Family: Gooseberry Family – Grossulariaceae
  • Growing form and height: Dioecious shrub. 1–1.5 m (3–5 ft.).
  • Flower: Small, approx. 5 mm (0.2 in.) across, regular (actinomorphic), greenish. Calyx-lobes 5, longer than petals. Petals 5. Male and female flowers on different individuals. Inflorescence a raceme, male with 10–30 flowers, female with less than 10, usually 2–5.
  • Leaves: Alternate. Stalked, fairly small. Blade deeply three-lobed, glabrous or sparsely hairy, with toothed margins.
  • Buds: Thin, tapering, sharp-pointed, glabrous. Almost white when young, later brown.
  • Fruit: Red, glossy, fleshy berry.
  • Habitat: Lush broadleaf and mixed woods. Also an ornamental.
  • Flowering time: May–June.

The genus Ribes comprises some 150 species native in the Northern hemisphere or in the mountains of South America. In general they are monoecious shrubs, with only a few exceptions.

Mountain currant is a dioecious shrub. It thrives best and is most common in dryish broadleaf woods on hillsides and on esker ridges. This species may sometimes be mixed with red currant (R. rubrum coll.). However, the leaves of the mountain currant are usually smaller than those of the red currant, and more glossy beneath, not greyish. Furthermore, the racemes of the mountain currant are still erect in fruit, those of the redcurrants are drooping.

Other species from the same genus
Other species from the same family

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