Alpine Currant Bush (Ribes alpinum)

Alpine Currant Bush

When it comes to tenacity, the Alpine Currant (Ribes alpinum) is strong and nearly impossible to kill. The Alpine Currant features dense branches from roots to tip that are completely cloaked by small leaves in medium green.

Of course, you get more than just a green shrub when you invest in the Alpine Currant. The textured foliage is accented by cute yellow clusters of small blooms that the pollinators adore, even if you won’t really notice them.

One of the earlier deciduous shrubs to leaf out with serrated and lobed leaves that are bright and refreshing first thing in the spring. The bright green leaves age to a darker shiny green. Fall color can be yellow but it is not typical for this plant.

Songbirds appreciate the red berries that female plants produce, but because these plants are dioecious, you will want to plant multiples to ensure you have a male pollinator and fruit-producing female plants.

Our expert growers try to propagate male plants as they exhibit some rust resistance in the landscape. The dense branching is also wonderful nesting and cover for local birds.

Planting and Application:

This medium-green shrub makes for a lovely backdrop planting, an easily manageable natural hedge or a low-growing screen that offers touches of interest throughout the year! Alpine Currants make a safe and sound choice for an attractive and easy shrub that makes for a remarkable privacy and screening hedge, especially when trimmed into shape. Add to rock gardens as a very drought tolerant and xeric landscaping backbone!

While a singular Alpine Currant makes for an attractive addition to the garden bed as a focal point or for softening the corners of hardscapes, or anchoring a garden bed, they’re typically used as foundation plantings! Currant bushes are a good option for older neighborhoods where there are mature trees.

  • Go-To Choice For Flowering Ornamental Landscaping
  • Early Bright Green Foliage In Spring
  • Looks Great Trimmed or Au Naturale
  • Flowers For Pollinators & Shelter For Birds
  • Low Hedges, Foundation Plantings, Specimens, Backdrops & En Masse

Tips for Care:

The Alpine Currant withstands some of the most intolerable conditions. It doesn’t mind a city setting or clay soils! It will also thrive in full sun to shade. Plant in full sun and partial shade throughout USDA growing zones 2 to 7 in well-drained enriched soil. These plants appreciate a 3-4 inch thick layer of mulch, especially in drier and colder growing zone locations.

This tough shrub takes pruning like a champ and the Alpine Currant does appreciate an early springtime trim for the best health. If you are growing your shrub in its natural form, then instead of shearing, it’s recommended you perform renewal pruning every few years instead. Simply remove the oldest branches leaving the younger thinner stems or they can be completely cut down and started over if desired.

  • Full Sun & Partial Shade
  • Moderately Moist Well-Drained Soil
  • Alkaline Soil, Clay, Mild Drought & Salt Tolerant
  • Takes Spring Pruning Like a Champ
  • Very Cold Tolerant

Tough, cold-hardy and nearly impossible to kill, the Alpine Currant flowering and fruiting shrub that you and your local wildlife will adore!

Alpine Currant Bush (Ribes alpinum) Details

Common name Alpine Currant Bush
Botanical name Ribes alpinum
Plant type Deciduous
Hardiness zone 2-7
Growth rate Medium
Height 3 - 5 ft.
Width 5 - 6 ft.
Sunlight Partial Shade
Moisture Medium
Soil condition Well Drained
Pollinator-friendly Yes
Pruning time Early Spring
Flower color Greenish-Yellow