Ribes sanguineum (Red Flowering Currant)
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Plant Description: This deciduous shrub grows with multiple or few stems in an upright to spreading form. Leaves are 3-5 lobed, with lightly toothed margins and indented veins, giving a wrinkled appearance. Turning a yellow to red color in autumn, the leaves leave the orangish-red bark behind when they drop. From March to April, many clusters of small tubular pink flowers appear all over the plant with some congregations having up to 25 individual flowers. Bluish-black edible berries follow, although have a very sour taste.
The leaves and berries of this plant are edible. Berries can be eaten raw, but because of their taste it is recommended to cook them. The berries are usually found in jams, syrups, etc. This species has also been investigated for medicinal anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. *NEVER CONSUME PLANTS WITHOUT PROPER ID. CONSULT A PROFESSIONAL FOR MEDICAL USE*
- Height: 5-12ft
- Width: 5-12ft
- Watering needs: Moderate
- Sun needs: Full sun to partial shade
- Soil needs: Moderately fertile, well-drained soil
- Bloom Time: March-April
- Ripening Time: August-Sept
- Portland Plant List (Backyard Habitat Certification): Yes
Landscape Use and Ecological Function: A native plant, Ribes sanguineum grows from Southwest British Columbia into Southern California between the Pacific Coast and the west slope of the Cascades. Found growing in open forests, and dry rocky slopes from sea level to 6000 ft.
We recommend using this plant for meadowscapes along with woodland and rain gardens. Because of the habitat it naturally helps to create, this plant is amazing for attracting pollinators and birds. The showy flowers in the spring provide nectar to hummingbirds and bring in butterflies. Drought resistant once established, extra water during the first two growing seasons will help with establishment.
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