Experimental Farm Network - Golden Currant

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01/03/2024 14:06:34
Also known as clove currant, buffalo currant, and pruterberry, golden currant is probably our most widely consumed wild currant or gooseberry. Native to Canada and much of the US (outside the Southeast), it can frequently be found growing around gravel banks and plains, especially around flowing water. Plants can grow in full shade, but are much less likely to produce fruit there. It is among the most drought-tolerant of the Ribes. The pretty yellow flowers are hermaphroditic, but yield can be increased by cross-pollination (so growing seed-grown plants instead of a single cultivar is a good way to ensure diversity in your stand). The plants attract pollinators including bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. Various birds and mammals eat the fruit, which vary from round to oblong and from black to yellow, with golden orange being a common color (hence the name). Flavors can vary widely as well.

The fruits are edible raw, but like most Ribes species are often too sour for most people's taste. Some even have some bitterness. But with the addition of some sugar, maple syrup, or honey, they can make absolutely fantastic jams, jellies, juices, wines, and vinegars. The flowers are also edible.