prickly gooseberry Grossulariaceae Ribes
cynosbati L. symbol: RICY
Leaf: Alternate, simple, deciduous, shallowly palmately lobed (3 to 5 lobes) to notched, orbicular, 2 to 3 inches long, large rounded teeth; base cordate; dark green and hairy-glandular above, paler and somewhat pubescent below.
Flower: Perfect; 1/3 inch, pale yellow or white, tubular flowers with 5 petals, borne in mid-spring, in sparse hanging clusters; the base of the flower hairy.
Fruit: Purple-red, round, 1/3 inch berries covered in prickles, ripen in mid-summer.
Twig: Moderately stout, red-gray, covered in short hairs and prickles on the new growth or smooth; 1 to 3 long spines at the nodes.
Bark: Silvery gray, reddish tint and finely peeling; spines persisting.
Form: Small to medium shrub up to 5 feet tall.
Looks like: Appalachian gooseberry - mapleleaf viburnum
Additional Range Information: Ribes cynosbati is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. Download the full-size PDF map.
External Links: USDA Plants Database
All material © 2019 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson; Silvics reprinted from Ag Handbook 654; range map source information