Agrus zvichayny – common gooseberry

(Grossulariaceae); common gooseberry


We are used to thinking that gooseberry is exclusively a garden plant. It turns out that wild gooseberry grows in the Caucasus and the Carpathians completely independently of humans. Cultivated forms and varieties of this plant are bred in gardens. Crispy, sweet and sour gooseberry berries are children’s favorite treats, and blackberry jam can satisfy even the most refined taste.

Gooseberry is a bush with prickly shoots, up to 150 cm tall. The leaves of the plant are 3-5-lobed, toothed. The flowers are greenish or reddish (depending on the form and variety), single or in 2-3-flowered tassels. The fruit is a berry of rounded or elliptical shape, white, yellow, red or black. The plant blooms in May-June, the fruits ripen in July-August.

Gooseberry is not only a delicacy, but also a medicinal plant. Its fruits contain up to 10% sugars (fructose, glucose, sucrose), organic acids (mainly citric and malic), pectin substances, vitamin C (up to 30 mg%), carotene (provitamin A), vitamin E, folic acid, various pigments, micro- and macroelements.

Gooseberry is useful for hypertension, anemia, chronic constipation, kidney and bladder diseases, metabolic disorders and obesity. Its fruits are an excellent tool for preventing atherosclerosis and capillary hemorrhages. Gooseberry berries are tasty, but not useful for everyone. Patients with stomach and duodenal ulcers should refrain from their use.

Bees also love gooseberries, they happily visit its flowers to collect nectar. And not in vain! They collect up to 100 kg of honey from 1 hectare of plant thickets.

Skillful housewives prepare not only jam, but also fruit juice and fruit wine from gooseberries.

Gooseberry fruits are not recommended for use in colitis and enteritis accompanied by diarrhea.

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