Gooseberry- Ribes uva-crispa spp. 'Hinnomaki Red'
Gooseberry is a multi stemmed shrub native to Europe, but has since naturalized in parts of North America. The grape-sized fruit has a tart skin, sweet flesh, and ripens in our area in mid July. Thorns on this bush are a drawback for young hands to pick, but the fruit, whether eaten fresh or turned in to jams, jellies, pies, or wine, has been the favorite of palettes for ages! Quite a flavorful fruit. This low maintenance shrub stands 3-5' high and wide. Plant 3-4' apart for production hedges or 4-5' in the perennial garden. Hardy to zones 3-7.
About 'Hinnomaki Red'- (This is currently the only variety we have on hand. Check back for others as we plan on expanding the gooseberry bank!) The deep purple berries are said to be one of the sweetest tasting varieties. Despite the claims of these berries being sweet, they still have a tartness that make our mouths pucker, especially when underripe. Yet, we always end up grabbing for more! This variety is disease and pest resistant however, we've had some sawfly caterpillar destruction to the leaves within the last couple years. We pick off the caterpillars when we see them and their presence hasn't been enough to affect the production or vigor of the plant.