Blackcurrants are one of the world’s most commercially grown crops and have been picked in the wild since medieval times when they were also used as a medicinal herb.
It wasn’t until the 19th and 20th centuries that research uncovered just how vitamin packed blackcurrants are!
Weight for weight, blackcurrants have 4 times as much vitamin C as oranges and were one of the most grown fruits during the early part of the 20th century, especially during war years when vitamin C wasn’t easy to find elsewhere.
Blackcurrants are also a good source of calcium and iron and are rich in antioxidants.
So, if it’s possible, growing blackcurrants at home seems like a great way of having, not only delicious fruit but health benefits as well. Blackcurrants tend not to grow so well in containers and prefer open ground but new varieties are being developed all the time so it may be worth checking at your local garden supplier for new types in your region.
There’s a handy growing guide (with recipes!) mentioned below if you’re determined to get some of that vitamin C and other good stuff at your fingertips next season, and why not?
Blackcurrants will keep for a few days in the fridge, as long as they are dry when picked and unwashed before storing. They can be frozen but they will lose some texture and taste during the freezing process:
Prepare and lay out on a tray and freeze quickly. Put into a suitable container, label and freeze. The most common way of storing blackcurrants is by making jam. I remember my Gran’s homemade blackcurrant jam being the best thing since or on sliced bread when I was a kid!
There are a few blackcurrant varieties readily available and I found this one on Amazon (UK)
Blackcurrant Summer Pearls Giant Garden Plant Hardy Shrub
“Low-maintenance, Blackcurrant ‘Summer Pearls’ is a compact and will produce a heavy crop. Each fruit is up to 1cm in diameter, making them the biggest blackcurrants you have ever seen!”
You could even make soup with these delicious summer fruits! The recipe on this page should tempt your taste buds!
P.S. This step by step growing guide will help you get the most out of your home-grown blackcurrants.
How to Grow Blackcurrants (updated edition)
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