• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Ribes nigrum 'Big Ben' (PBR) (B)

blackcurrant 'Big Ben'

AGM plants

AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

  • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
  • Available to buy
  • Of good constitution
  • Essentially stable in form & colour
  • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases
  • Other common names blackcurrant 'Big Ben'

  • Family Grossulariaceae

  • Genus Ribes can be deciduous or evergreen shrubs, sometimes spiny, with simple, usually palmately lobed leaves and small tubular or bell-shaped, solitary or racemose flowers borne in spring or summer, followed by juicy, sometimes edible berries

  • Details An upright blackcurrant bush for culinary or dessert use, to 1.5m in height. Flowers insignificant ,white; produces a sizeable crop of large sweet shiny black fruit, self-fertile, early season

Characteristics

  • Foliage Deciduous

  • Habit Columnar/Upright

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)

    H6

Colour

Sunlight

  • Full Sun

  • Aspect East-facing or North-facing or South-facing or West-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered

Soil

  • Clay

    Clay

  • Loam

    Loam

  • Sand

    Sand

  • MoistureMoist but well-drained

  • SoilClay, Loam, Sand

  • pHNeutral

Size

  • Ultimate height 1-1.5 metres

  • Ultimate spread 1-1.5 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 2-5 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow as a stooled bush. Mulch with well rotted manure or compost. Add a general fertilizer and additional nitrogen if necessary, see our Blackcurrant page for more growing tips

Propagation Propagate by hardwood cuttings

Suggested planting locations and garden types Cottage & Informal Garden

How to care

Pruning Renewal pruning in the dormant season

Pests May be susceptible to gall mites, gall midges, aphids and reversion

Diseases Resistant to powdery mildews and leaf spot

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