|States and territories where it is native|
Ribes sanguineum, the flowering currant, redflower currant, red-flowering currant, or red currant is a North American species of flowering plant in the family Grossulariaceae, native to the western United States and Canada.
The flowers are produced in early spring at the same time as the leaves emerge, on dangling racemes 3–7 cm (1–3 in) long of 5–30 flowers; each flower is 5–10 mm (0.20–0.39 in) in diameter, with five red or pink petals.
|Ribes sanguineum var. glutinosum||Racemes with 15-40 pendant flowers, sepals pink to white.||Oregon and California south to Santa Barbara County, 0-2300 m|
|Ribes sanguineum var. sanguineum||Racemes with 5-15(-20) erect to stiffly spreading flowers, sepals red.||California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington, 1300-2400m.|
It is native to the western United States and Canada. In western British Columbia, Washington, and Oregon, it is distributed widely in the moist regions west of the Cascades. In California it is restricted to areas near the coast, and can be found as far south as Santa Barbara County. Although its conservation status is secure across the rest of its range, in Idaho it is critically imperiled and is found only rarely in Bonner, Kootenai, Benewah, and Adams counties.
It is widely cultivated and naturalized throughout temperate Europe and Australasia.
The early spring nectar of red-flowering currant is used by hummingbirds as well as butterflies, which along with moths browse the leaves in their larval stage. Deer and elk occasionally browse the leaves, and the berries are consumed by birds and small mammals. Its branches provide nesting habitat for birds.
The species is a host to white pine blister rust, which led to eradication efforts in the early to mid 20th century.  From the 1920s the genus Ribes was federally restricted within the United States until the ban was lifted in 1966 due to increased resistance among both Ribes and Western white pine populations.
Cultivation and Uses
Ribes sanguineum was introduced into cultivation in Britain in the fall of 1826 by Scottish botanist David Douglas, via seeds he had sent back during his explorations for the Royal Horticultural Society in the Pacific Northwest. It and its varieties and cultivars became immediately popular among English gardeners. The noted botanist and RHS member John Lindley remarked:
...of such importance do we consider [red-flowering currant] to the embellishment of our gardens, that if the expense incurred by the Horticultural Society in Mr. Douglas' voyage had been attended with no other result than the introduction of this species, there would have been no ground for dissatisfaction.
-John Lindley, quoted in The Collector by Jack Nisbet 
It remains a popular garden shrub, valued for its brightly colored and scented flowers in early spring, and birds and habitat support. Numerous cultivars have been selected with flowers ranging from white to dark red. The following cultivars have gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit:
Both indigenous and non-indigenous people use the berries for food, eating them fresh or dried or making them into jams, pies, juice, or syrup. The flowers can be used to infuse beverages, especially spirits.
Red-flowering currant has been an invasive species in New Zealand since it was naturalized in 1904, where it forms dense stands in shrublands and along waterways which crowd out native vegetation.
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- The Plant List, Ribes sanguineum Pursh
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- "Ribes sanguineum var. sanguineum in Flora of North America @ efloras.org". eFloras.org Home. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
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- "Red-flowered Currant (Ribes sanguineum) | Idaho Fish and Game". idfg.idaho.gov. Retrieved 2021-05-12.
- Biota of North America Program 2014 county distribution map
- "Ribes sanguineum". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
- "Red-flowering Currant". www.fs.fed.us. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
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- Nisbet, Jack (2009). The Collector, David Douglas and the Natural History of the Pacific Northwest. Seattle: Sasquatch Books. pp. 183–184. ISBN 9781570616136.
- "AGM Plants - Ornamental" (PDF). Royal Horticultural Society. July 2017. p. 87. Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- "RHS Plantfinder - Ribes sanguineum 'Koja'". Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- "'Poky's Pink'". RHS. Retrieved 19 March 2020.
- "RHS Plantfinder - Ribes sanguineum White Icicle = 'Ubric'". Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- "Ribes sanguineum". New Zealand Plant Conservation Network. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
- "Weed Information Sheet". Weedbusters. Retrieved 2021-05-06.
- "National list of naturalised invasive and potentially invasive garden plants" (PDF). World Wildlife Foundation Australia. World Wildlife Foundation Australia. 4 May 2006. Retrieved 12 May 2021.
Media related to Ribes sanguineum at Wikimedia Commons