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Products > Ribes speciosum
Ribes speciosum - Fuchsia-flowering Gooseberry

Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Grossulariaceae (Gooseberries or Currants)
Origin: California (U.S.A.)
Flower Color: Red
Bloomtime: Winter/Spring
Height: 4-8 feet
Width: 4-6 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: <15 F
Ribes speciosum (Fuchsia-flowering Gooseberry) - This California native deciduous shrub grows as tall as 10 feet tall by 7 feet wide but is typically seen much smaller, usually no taller than about 4 feet. It has horizontal then arching branches that celebrate the new year with the emergence of the new shiny leathery rounded leaves that are shallowly divided into lobes with narrow sharp spines between the leaf nodes. In winter to mid-spring appear the very attractive pendulous tubular red flowers with long exerted red stamens along the branches and these are followed by round red currant fruit that are decoratively held through the summer. Plant in full sun (coastal), light or afternoon shade in a well-drained soil and irrigate occasionally to not at all - this is a drought tolerant plant in coastal gardens but tolerates more water if given and will go late summer dormant if not irrigated. Hardy to 10 F or less. A very good plant for growing under our native oaks and it is one of the showiest of the native shrubs. The flowers are very attractive to hummingbirds and the fruit attracts other birds. It received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit in 1993. This plant is native to the Coastal-sage scrub and chaparral communities California and Baja California, where it grows in the scrub and chaparral of the coastal and transverse mountain ranges from the bay area south into Baja California. The name Ribes comes from the the Syrian or Kurdish 'ribas', a name for other plants in this genus. The specific epithet is Latin for "showy". We have grown this plant on and off since 1985. Image on this webpage courtesy of the >Theodore Payne Foundation Information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it. We also will incorporate comments received from others and welcome getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips would aid others in growing Ribes speciosum.