Gooseberry Ribes spp.
Family: Saxifragaceae (Saxifrage)
Gooseberries are small shrubs, usually not much more than knee-height.
Typically they are solitary and are not overly multi-stemmed.
They tend to stand out because of their light brown colour and
thorns, which help separate them from the closely related Currants
(also in the genus Ribes).
The amount of thorns varies from species to species, but there
are usually thorns at the base of the leaf scar and there may or may
not be weaker "bristles" scattered between. The buds on all
Gooseberries are light brown, with loose papery scales. There are
several different species, though they are more difficult to separate
in the winter.
Winter twig of a Gooseberry. Notice the buds with their light brown, loose, papery scales
End bud and lateral buds. Thorns usually occur at the base of the leaf scar
Another view of the lateral bud and thorns. Also notice the smaller "bristles" on the main stem
Winter twig of another Gooseberry
Another view off the twig
The twigs can be quite thorny/bristly
Older stems can be very thorny
Gooseberry leaves (like those of Currants) resemble Maple leaves
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© 2008 Josh Sayers
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