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Ribes (/ˈrbz/)[5] is a genus of about 200 known species of flowering plants, most of them native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere.[2] The various species are known as currants or gooseberries, and some are cultivated for their edible fruit or as ornamental plants. Ribes is the only genus in the family Grossulariaceae.


Ribes species are medium shrublike plants[6] with marked diversity in strikingly diverse flowers and fruit.[7] They have either palmately lobed or compound leaves, and some have thorns.[6] The sepals of the flowers are larger than the petals, and fuse into a tube or saucer shape.[6] The ovary is inferior, maturing into a berry with many seeds.[6]


Ribes is the single genus in the Saxifragales family Grossulariaceae. Although once included in the broader circumscription of Saxifragaceae sensu lato, it is now positioned as a sister group to Saxifragaceae sensu stricto.[8]


First treated on a worldwide basis in 1907,[9] the infrageneric classification has undergone many revisions,[10] and even in the era of molecular phylogenetics there has been contradictory evidence.[7] Although sometimes treated as two separate genera, Ribes and Grossularia (Berger 1924),[11] the consensus has been to consider it as a single genus, divided into a number of subgenera, the main ones of which are subgenus Ribes (currants) and subgenus Grossularia (gooseberries), further subdivided into sections.[10] Janczewski (1907) considered six subgenera and eleven sections.[9] Berger's twelve subgenera based on two distinct genera (see Senters & Soltis (2003) Table 1) have subsequently been demoted to sections.[8][7] Weigend (2007) elevated a number of sections to produce a taxonomy of seven subgenera; Ribes (sections Ribes, Heretiera, Berisia) Coreosma, Calobotrya (sections Calobotrya, Cerophyllum), Symphocalyx, Grossularioides, Grossularia, Parilla.[12][13]

Taxonomy, according to Berger, modified by Sinnott (1985):[8][7]

  • Subgenus Ribes L. (currants) 8 sections
    • Section Berisia Spach (alpine currants)
    • Section Calobotrya (Spach) Jancz. (ornamental currants)
    • Section Coreosma (Spach) Jancz. (black currants)
    • Section Grossularioides ( Jancz.) Rehd. (spiny or Gooseberry-stemmed currants)
    • Section Heritiera Jancz. (dwarf or skunk currants)
    • Section Parilla Jancz. (Andine or South American currants)
    • Section Ribes L. (red currants)
    • Section Symphocalyx Berland. (golden currants)
  • Subgenus Grossularia (Mill.) Pers. (Gooseberries) 4 sections
    • Section Grossularia (Mill.) Nutt.
    • Section Robsonia Berland.
    • Section Hesperia A.Berger
    • Section Lobbia A. Berger

Some authors continued to treat Hesperia and Lobbia as subgenera.[14][7] Early molecular studies suggested that subgenus Grossularia was actually embedded within subgenus Ribes.[15] Analysis of combined molecular datasets confirms subgenus Grossularia as a monophyletic group, with two main lineages, sect. Grossularia and another clade consisting of glabrous gooseberies, including Hesperia, Lobbia and Robsonia. Other monophyletic groups identified were Calobotrya, Parilla, Symphocalyx and Berisia. However sections Ribes, Coreosma and Heritiera were not well supported. Consequently, there is insufficient resolution to justify further taxonomic revision.[7]


Blackcurrant (Ribes nigrum)
Redcurrant (Ribes rubrum)
Ribes speciosum (fuchsia-flowered gooseberry)

There are around 200 species of Ribes.[2] Selected species include:

Distribution and habitat

Ribes is widely distributed through the Northern Hemisphere, and also extending south in the mountainous areas of South America.[7] Species can be found in meadows or near streams.[6]


Currants are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species.


The genus Ribes includes the edible currants: blackcurrant, redcurrant, and white currant, as well as the European gooseberry, Ribes uva-crispa, and several hybrid varieties. It should not be confused with the dried currants used in cakes and puddings, which are from the Zante currant, a small-fruited cultivar of the grape Vitis vinifera. Ribes gives its name to the popular blackcurrant cordial Ribena.

The genus also includes the group of ornamental plants collectively known as the flowering currants, for instance, R. sanguineum.

United States

There are restrictions on growing some Ribes species in some U.S. states, as they are the main alternate host for white pine blister rust.


Blackfoot people used blackcurrant root (Ribes hudsonianum) for the treatment of kidney diseases and menstrual and menopausal problems. The Cree used the fruit of Ribes glandulosum as a fertility enhancer to assist women in becoming pregnant.[35]

European immigrants who settled in North America in the 18th century typically made wine from both red and white currants.[36]


  1. ^ APG IV 2016.
  2. ^ a b c "Ribes L." Plants of the World Online. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  3. ^ Morin 2008.
  4. ^ Lu, Lingdi; Alexander, Crinan. "Ribes". Flora of China. Vol. 8 – via eFloras.org, Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
  5. ^ "ribes". Oxford English Dictionary (Online ed.). Oxford University Press. (Subscription or participating institution membership required.)
  6. ^ a b c d e Taylor, Ronald J. (1994) [1992]. Sagebrush Country: A Wildflower Sanctuary (rev. ed.). Missoula, MT: Mountain Press Pub. Co. p. 42. ISBN 0-87842-280-3. OCLC 25708726.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Schultheis & Donoghue 2004.
  8. ^ a b c Messinger 1995.
  9. ^ a b Janczewski 1907.
  10. ^ a b Sinnott 1985.
  11. ^ Berger 1924.
  12. ^ Weigend et al 2002.
  13. ^ Weigend 2007.
  14. ^ Messinger et al 1999.
  15. ^ Senters & Soltis 2003.
  16. ^ "Currant (Ribes)". The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station. State of Connecticut. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  17. ^ "803 Rules and Regulations for the Control and Supression of the White Pine Blister Rust". Delaware General Assembly : Delaware Regulations. State of Delaware. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  18. ^ "Quarantine Information". Maine Forest Service. State of Maine. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  19. ^ "Growing Small Fruits". University of Maryland Extension. State of Maryland. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  20. ^ "330 CMR 9.00: Plant quarantines". Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  21. ^ "286.104 Cultivated black currant declared public nuisance; destruction". Michigan Legislature: Michigan Compiled Laws. State of Michigan. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  22. ^ "White Pine Blister Rust Resistant Currant and Gooseberry Varieties" (PDF). Michigan Department of Agriculture. State of Michigan. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  23. ^ "227-K:6 White Pine Blister Rust Control Areas". State of New Hampshire. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  24. ^ "White Pine Blister Rust in NH | NH Division of Forests and Lands". www.nh.gov. Retrieved 2023-02-16.
  25. ^ "Department of Agriculture : Plant Pest Survey". State of New Jersey. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  26. ^ "Crop Profile: Currants in New York". Cornell Cooperative Extension. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  27. ^ "02 NCAC 48A .0401 Currant and Gooseberry Plants". State of North Carolina. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  28. ^ "White Pine Blister Rust". Plant Industry - Plant Protection Section. North Carolina Department of Argiculture and Consumer Services. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  29. ^ Ellis, Michael A.; Horst, Leona. "White Pine Blister Rust on Currants and Gooseberries". Ohioline. Ohio State University Extension. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  30. ^ "Home Fruit Plantings: Gooseberries and Currants". PennState Extension. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  31. ^ "250-RICR-40-10-2 Rules and Regulations Governing the Suppression of White Pine Blister Rust" (PDF). Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  32. ^ "Currants and Gooseberries". NE Small Fruit Management Guide. Center for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment, University of Massachusetts at Amherst. 22 June 2015. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  33. ^ "2VAC5-450-40. European black currant plants". Commonwealth of Virginia. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  34. ^ "West Virginia White Pine Blister Rust Quarantine" (PDF). West Virginia Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  35. ^ Tilford, Gregory L. (1997). Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West. Missoula: Mountain Press Publishing. ISBN 978-0-87842-359-0.
  36. ^ Kalm, Pehr (1772). Travels into North America: containing its natural history, and a circumstantial account of its plantations and agriculture in general, with the civil, ecclesiastical and commercial state of the country, the manners of the inhabitants, and several curious and important remarks on various subjects. Translated by Johann Reinhold Forster. London: T. Lowndes. p. 67. ISBN 9780665515002. OCLC 1083889360.


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Grossulariaceae: Brief Summary

provided by wikipedia EN

Ribes (/ˈraɪbiːz/) is a genus of about 200 known species of flowering plants, most of them native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. The various species are known as currants or gooseberries, and some are cultivated for their edible fruit or as ornamental plants. Ribes is the only genus in the family Grossulariaceae.

Wikipedia authors and editors
visit source
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wikipedia EN