Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Ribes aureum
golden currant

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to California, east to across most of North America to the Atlantic Coast.

Habitat: Sagebrush desert where seasonally moist to ponderosa pine forest openings at middle elevations.

Flowers: April-May

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Bumblebees, bees, hummingbirds


Erect to spreading, unarmed, glabrous shrubs 1-3 m. tall; branches reddish when young, becoming dark gray with age.


Leaves alternate, petiolate, pale green, the blades broadly deltoid-ovate to ovate, 2-5 cm. broad, palmately 3-lobed less than half their length, the segments entire or with 2-5 rounded teeth.


Flowers fragrant, 5-18 in ascending or reflexed racemes usually longer than the leaves; pedicels up to 8 mm. long; calyx tube cylindric, 6-8 mm. long, the 5 lobes oblong-elliptic, spreading, 5-7 mm. long, the lobes and tube golden yellow; petals 5, small, yellow to reddish, oblong-obovate, erect; stamens 5, alternate with and equal to the petals; styles 2, fused almost to the stigmas, glabrous, about equal to the calyx lobes; ovary inferior.


Berry globose, glabrous, about 7 mm. long, orange or occasionally burgundy.

Accepted Name:
Ribes aureum Pursh
Publication: Fl. Amer. Sept. 1: 164. 1813.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Ribes aureum in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database

WA Flora Checklist: Ribes aureum checklist entry

OregonFlora: Ribes aureum information

E-Flora BC: Ribes aureum atlas page

CalPhotos: Ribes aureum photos

73 photographs:
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