Clove Currant or Ribes odoratum

One of the first flowering shrubs to produce flowers in my garden is Ribes odoratum or Clove Currant. My plant was a small start that I received from a fellow Master Gardener several years ago. I was surprised how quickly it grew and produced flowers. The shrub blooms in April and the flowers have a wonderful fragrance that smell like cloves. The flowers on my Currant are yellow with a touch of orange in the center. This shrub will grow in partial shade but prefers sun. It is not particular about soil and any reasonable well drained garden soil will do. This is an easy plant to propagate if you want more for the garden. You can propagate by suckers, seeds or cuttings. This shrub is treated as a specimen plant but it can also be used to form hedges. They grow to about 6 -12 feet tall and spread 6 to 8 feet wide. The leaves are 3 to 5 lobed and are deciduous, turning gold in the fall. The plant does produce berries that can be used for pies, jelly or preserves. This is a great plant for a native garden and one that will attract butterflies to it's flowers and birds to it's fruits. You do need a male and female plant for fruit.
I only have the one plant and I enjoy the flowers but I don't have fruit. Clove Currant grows in zones 4 to 8.
The Creative Gardener


queenofseaford said…
Wow Debbie, I don't know this shrub. Will have to read more about it. I love clove fragrance.
I don't know the shrub, but it is really beautiful!

This sounds like an interesting one. The flowers are really pretty, much different from the currants I have and the smell of cloves, Yum! I wonder if I could find space for one...
Becky said…
I got clove currant from an old friend. I was unaware of a male female thing but I know we didn't have berries until the hummingbirds discovered the flowers.
Grace Peterson said…
Hello CG, I noticed you're an official follower of my blog so I thought I'd drop by and say hi and thanks. I don't have Ribes odoratum but I do have R. sanguinium. Love those cherry red flowers. Of course they don't have the luscious scent of R. odoratum but I have my winter honeysuckle, sarcococca, Daphne odora, and Chimonanthus for fragrance. Plus a few primroses. I'm a plant pig. :-) Anyway, great post.
Kanak Hagjer said…
Hi Debbie, that's a good-looking shrub. I'm honoured that an Adv. Master gardener is following my blog. Thank you so much! There's a lot I can learn by visiting you often Cheers!
Gardeness said…
What an intriguing plant. Different from the flowering currant native to PNW. I'll have to read up more on it because it sounds lovely. You've got a great site with handy information. I'll definitely be following!
Tatyana said…
Debbie, I've never heard about this plant. I have three black currant plants. They should be related, I guess. Although they look so different!
Ilona said…
I always wanted one of these shrubs. You have showcased it so beautifully...maybe I will have to purchase one this year:)
Anonymous said…
I also love the fragrance of Clove Current wafting across my backyard. I use this shrub to hide the back and two ends of my cinderblock raised-bed garden. Another excellent point is that it feeds birds. Along with a mulberry tree and goldfish pond, it sort of provides a bird habitat in my back yard.

Couldn't recommend Clove Current too highly.

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