Sierra gooseberry is a captivating shrub with showy flowers and spiny yet edible fruit. In the Klamath-Siskiyou region Sierra gooseberry grows on rock outcrops, dry open slopes, in chaparral, along sunbaked ridgelines, in sunny openings or part-shade in forest or woodland, and on rocky terrain. Sierra gooseberry is a small to medium sized, semi-upright to spreading shrub that grows 2′-4′ tall depending on site conditions. The tubular, fuchsia-like flowers hang from the thorny branches in an attractive manner. The small white petals are surrounded by reflexed, burgundy-red sepals. The stamens and stigma protrude from the flower. Blooms March-April. The flowers are attractive to bumble bees and other pollinators. The upright or arching branches are thorny. The leaves are dark green with a shiny sheen. Sierra gooseberry has gorgeous fall color and is deciduous. The fruit (gooseberry) is round, turning from green to red-purple when ripe. Although the fruit is covered in spines it is edible and great for gooseberry jam. The fruit is also eaten by mammals and birds. Prefers coarse, well-drained soil and dry to medium-dry conditions. Can be propagated by seed and layering. Larval host plant for numerous butterflies. Deer browse on new suckering shoots. Drought resistant.
Seed Germination Instructions
90-120 days cold-moist stratification. Sow outside in fall.