Flowering Currant, Ribes sanguineum


The Flowering Currant is a showy North American species that is quite a popular garden plant in the UK due to it's stunning Springtime displays of hanging, decorative blooms. It is related to other edible currants, such as the blackcurrant and redcurrant, and does produce edible berries, but these are lacking in flavour. The real appeal of this plant comes from it's edible flowers, which have a strong herby aroma and taste not unlike sweet hibiscus. They can be used for a range of purposes, including raw in a salad or garnish, or infused into syrups, teas or vinegars.

Flowering Currant Checklist


🏑 Urban Green Spaces, including scrubland, parks and gardens.
🚜 Hedgerows, including field edges.


πŸŒΈπŸŒžπŸ‚ March - October


☘️ The dark green leaves are similar to other currents. Palmate with five lobes. 2–7 cm long and wide.


🌷 Flowers are produced in early spring (March - May) at the same time as the leaves. Between 5 and 30 flowers form on dangling stems 3–7 cm long. Each five-petalled flower is red-pink and 5–10mm in diameter.


🌱 Dangling flower stems. 3–7 cm long.

Fruit / Seeds

πŸ“ Flowering Currants produce dark purple, oval berries, about 1 cm long during Autumn. These are edible, but have an insipid flavour.

Edible Parts

☘️ Leaves
🌷 Flowers

Aroma / Taste

πŸ‘ƒ Young leaves and shoots have a strong, sweet, resinous scent.
πŸ‘ƒ Flowers have a rather strong but pleasant, resinous and herby aroma, a little like hibiscus.
πŸ‘… Leaves have a light, fruity flavour when raw.
πŸ‘… Flowers have an interesting, fruity-floral-herby taste that infuses well.

ID Notes

🟩 ID Difficulty - Beginner
πŸ‘€ The bright red-pink flowers and blackcurrent-like leaves are key identifiers of this plant.
πŸ‘ƒ The distinctive sweet, resinous, herby scent is also a key identifier.
🀚 The flowers and leaves are often covered in a sugary resin that sticks to your fingers.


πŸ₯— Salad - Leaves can be eaten raw and added to salads.
🌺 Garnish - Flowers can be used as a garnish.
β˜•οΈ Beverage - Flowers and Leaves can be used to make teas or other drinks.
πŸ§‰ Condiment - Flowers can be used to make vinegars, preserves and sauces.