Ribes, Red Currant 'Red Lake'

Ribes rubrum

Family: Grossulariaceae
Genus: Ribes (RYE-bees) (Info)
Species: rubrum (ROO-brum) (Info)
Cultivar: Red Lake


Edible Fruits and Nuts


Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Pale Green

Chartreuse (yellow-green)


Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From woody stem cuttings

From softwood cuttings

From hardwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

By simple layering

By tip layering

By serpentine layering

By stooling or mound layering

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds

Unblemished fruit must be significantly overripe before harvesting seed; clean and dry seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Juneau, Alaska

San Anselmo, California

Upland, California

Brookfield, Illinois

Prospect, Kentucky

Bay City, Michigan

Ely, Minnesota

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lincoln, Nebraska

Grove City, Ohio

Hulbert, Oklahoma

Hummelstown, Pennsylvania

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania

Orem, Utah

Langley, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 3, 2019, janelp_lee from Toronto, ON (Zone 6a) wrote:

Very cold hardy and low maintenance! Very easy and fast to root by cuttings from mature plant in water or potting soil indoors in late fall. You will see each branch nod will send roots then you can cut individually so you can have many rooted cuttings produced from a twig quickly.

This plant when grow in full sun to partial shade will have the maximum crop but will be too tart to eat straight rather than in shade which is sweeter, good to eat straight although this way plant produces less quantity of berries. I found it is interesting.


On Jul 11, 2013, drobarr from Hummelstown, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I purchased my Red Lake currant bare root in spring 2012 from Gurneys Seed & Nursery Co and planted it in full sun. It wasnt much more than a twig and did not fruit in 2012 though it did grow several new branches. It survived the winter well and set about 100 little red berries in 2013 ripening in mid June. Little berries are tart but very delicious to eat. Imaintain a thick hardwood mulch around it. I have not had any diseases or pests attack it but have had some birds eating the berries.


On Apr 26, 2011, Erutuon from Minneapolis, MN wrote:

I planted a red currant two years ago (2009) in an afternoon sun location, though there's some shade in the middle of summer from our silver maple. It's done really well, fruited the first year, and I'm trying to grow it from cuttings to plant it in new locations. The first winter, I was worried that the winter sun was burning it, since it looked like the bark on new growth was peeling, but all the branches leafed out just fine.


On May 24, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

This shrub is so easy to propagate! Cut twigs in the fall, place them in the ground, and they root by the following spring. Branches self-layer, or they can be pegged down to root.

The fruit makes wonderful jelly and juice, very high in pectin. It is fairly tart, so it is seldom eaten fresh.

Shrubs do best if given afternoon shade, especially in warm climates. Birds find the fruit as inviting as humans, so crop should be protected. Harvest by picking the entire string of berries, then remove the stems.