BLACK CURRANT (RIBES NIGRUM)
One of the favourite fruits of the temperate world, blackcurrants produce numerous clumps of sweet, juicy, black fruits, heavily laden with vitamin C and countless other good vitamins, which are unbeatable for jams and juices. These ready-stratified seeds were harvested from some of the best cultivars in the world. Habits will vary a little but all plants will produce several kilograms of fruit when established. The dried leaves are sometimes used to make tea. These valuable plants are also amazingly hardy, surviving to below minus 40 F (which coincidentally is minus 40 C), with little problem. Their main competitor for vitamin C production, the lemon tree, is long dead at this temperature. Prune very old wood back occasionally and these plants will give fruit for very many years.
Seeds can be sown at any time of the year into a sandy compost and covered thinly with sand or grit. No artificial heat is needed. The seed tray is best left in a cool spot and kept moist. Seeds generally germinate in the spring whenever they are sown but odd ones may come up at any time.