London (change)
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11/08/2013 at 20:10

Hi having just moved I have identified a huge bush in my garden as a blue currant bush? But there is very little on the net it seems about them. Can someone please tell me whether I should prune it hard now as most of the growth looks woody and would like to make it smaller and bushier for next year. Also only has a handful of currants this year so would love to change this thanks for any help!! 

11/08/2013 at 20:18

Blueberry or blackcurrant?

11/08/2013 at 20:22

Sue, as fidgetbones hints, there is no plant popularly called a 'blue currant'. It could be either of fb's ideas, or a jostaberry, berberis, mahonia, and so on ... can you post a picture please?   

11/08/2013 at 20:27

Sue,  what colour were the berries?  Blueberries are bright blue.  Blackcurramts are black.  These bushes are pruned differently so it's important to know which one you have.  

11/08/2013 at 20:37 

this is the link I found as currants blue but not blueberry leaves?

 Like I said berries/currants def blue with whitish powder coating like sloes and blueberries but bush looks like currant so blue currant article only one I can find 


thanks in anticipation 

11/08/2013 at 20:47

As you said,californian black currant. A rare beast.

11/08/2013 at 20:48

Do the leaves stink?

11/08/2013 at 20:50

Going out to smell them now!! 


11/08/2013 at 20:52

No they don't smell and was not living here when flowering time so even n more confused .. 

11/08/2013 at 20:58

Well, if it is its still  ribes. I would just thin out any old branches from the base to open it up a bit. The leaves certainly look like a currant. I don't suppose there's any possibility that fruit is attached to another plant growing underneath it?


11/08/2013 at 21:10

Not that I can see. There are lots of think woody branches coming up so can I prune right back to about two foot high do you think so get some new growth coming up ? 

Huge thanks for all your help forum friends will be a regular reader and poster I can tell xx

11/08/2013 at 21:11

Oh there is a creeping Asian bramble underneath e but they are like yellowish raspberries.... Another surprise in my garden!! 

11/08/2013 at 21:13

Normally you take out  the oldest third each year.most currants fruit on second year wood. If you cut it right down you would not get any flowers next year. They could be interesting!


11/08/2013 at 21:16

Sounds like you have some rarities. Go slow until you are sure what you want to keep.

11/08/2013 at 21:19

thanks fidgetbones x 

11/08/2013 at 23:59

Sounds like good old flowering currant!  Hardly a rarity.

12/08/2013 at 07:35

ribes sanguineum is most obvious . I got distracted by the berries. Ribes bracteosum should have stinky leaves.  I've never seen a flowering currant fruit before but the fruit is supposed to taste awful. I suppose the best thing to do is wait until it flowers next year.

12/08/2013 at 09:17

Hi everyone, flowering currants can indeed bear a dull, tasteless fruit on a large and vigorous plant (not quite as big as the one in Sue's picture though).

My plant was pruned with "extreme prejudice" because it was not productive.

It started as a self-setting seedling and grew very fast, so might have been a hybrid between the flowering and fruiting bushes in the neighbour's garden and mine. Just a wild theory, don't ask for any more proof please.

12/08/2013 at 15:57
Sue Lovegrove wrote (see)

Oh there is a creeping Asian bramble underneath e but they are like yellowish raspberries.... Another surprise in my garden!! 

If the fruit turns bright red in the near future you might have a Japanese/N. American Wineberry, which I discovered  on taking over my allotment some years ago. The leaves look like raspberry leaves and turn yellow as they are fruiting. It is prickly and I cut out the obviously dead branches in spring and train the new growth up the side of my fruit cage. The fruits are very tart and usually it a race to pick the ripe ones before the birds, but they provide a change from raspberries.

20/08/2013 at 22:08

Hi thanks for all your replies. Will keep an eye  on bramble thanks Oldcompostheap. 

looked at pictures I had from visiting house when buying and could not see any ribex pink flowers on the bush as my mum has loads of those so she would have recognised It. Wll wait nd see what next spring brings I guess. Thanks all again 

1 to 20 of 23 messages