Help us achieve our goals:
make a donation »
Join the RHS today and support our charity
Free personalised gardening advice
RHS members get reduced ticket prices
RHS members get free access to RHS Gardens
Reduced prices on RHS Garden courses and workshops
020 3176 5800
Mon – Fri | 9am – 5pm
Make a donation
I have forgotten my password
Keep me signed in
Register for free to receive our newsletters, add comments to blogs/articles and to save content.
See what events are on near you and browse your bookmarked pages.
Blackcurrant gall midge can cause the leaves of blackcurrants to become distorted and crumpled.
The midge is a tiny (up to 2mm long) yellowish-brown fly. The females lay eggs between the folds of newly emerged leaves. The eggs hatch a few days later and orange-white larvae feed on the leaf surfaces for 10 to 14 days before going into the soil to pupate. Their feeding prevents normal expansion of the leaves which remain small, distorted and crumpled. Damage to established bushes is generally not serious although the distorted foliage is unsightly and may be mistaken for the symptoms of reversion disease. Young blackcurrant bushes and cuttings can suffer a more serious check in growth.
There are three generations during the summer with adult flies laying eggs in late April to early June, late June to early July, and late July to August. It is however, the first generation of larvae that is often the most damaging. The third generation of larvae, that finish feeding in August, spend the winter as pupae in the soil.
Some damage from this midge can be tolerated as light infestations will not affect cropping.
Hoeing the soil under bushes during dry weather in the summer may destroy some of the pupae by exposing them to drying conditions. Some blackcurrant cultivars, such as ‘Ben Connan’ and ‘Ben Sarek’, are resistant to this pest. Removing affected shoots can help reduce infestation levels.
Pesticides for gardeners (Adobe Acrobat pdf document outlining pesticides available to gardeners)
Agapanthus gall midge Aquilegia gall midge Blackcurrant big bud miteBlackcurrantsCurrant aphids Hemerocallis gall midge Pear midge Protect your gardenSpotted wing drosophila
the RHS today and get 12 months for the price of 9
RHS members can get exclusive individual advice from the RHS Gardening Advice team.
Register for the site or sign in to share your experiences on this topic and seek advice from our community of gardeners.
We're a UK charity established to share the best in gardening. We want to enrich everyone's life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.
Join the RHS today and get 12 months for the price of 9