how to grow, what to cook, benefits and harms

Goose­ber­ries, which are also called north­ern grapes, as well as agrus, are a high-yield­ing crop, famous for its high taste and many use­ful prop­er­ties.

gooseberry benefit


In the sum­mer, com­mon goose­ber­ries are in great demand among adults and chil­dren, but not every­one knows that in addi­tion to ben­e­fits, a sweet berry with sour notes can be harm­ful, espe­cial­ly if con­sumed uncon­trol­lably. The arti­cle tells about the ben­e­fits of goose­ber­ries, how it affects the health of adults and chil­dren, how to plant and care for the plant, and what goose­ber­ry dish­es can be pre­pared using sim­ple prod­ucts avail­able in the kitchen of every house­wife.

In this arti­cle:

A bit of gooseberry history

The com­mon goose­ber­ry is grown on the ter­ri­to­ry of the west­ern hemi­sphere of the earth, start­ing from Chi­na, end­ing with the Cau­ca­sus, North Africa, Cal­i­for­nia. Since the 17th cen­tu­ry, shrubs have been active­ly grown in Rus­sia and oth­er Euro­pean coun­tries. The plant enjoyed unprece­dent­ed pop­u­lar­i­ty among res­i­dents of Euro­pean coun­tries. It was con­sumed fresh, pre­pared var­i­ous desserts, drinks that ben­e­fit the body.

At the begin­ning of the twen­ti­eth cen­tu­ry, the plant was affect­ed by a dis­ease called spher­ote­ka. This dis­ease was brought from Amer­i­ca. Peo­ple who did not know what kind of attack it was and how to deal with it lost almost all vari­eties. The few that sur­vived and those cre­at­ed by selec­tive breed­ing gave life to mod­ern vari­eties.

Breed­ers from Amer­i­ca worked hard on breed­ing new vari­eties of goose­ber­ries. They man­aged to obtain a plant hybrid char­ac­ter­ized by increased resis­tance to pow­dery mildew, which is the main ene­my of the cul­ture. Today, the plant is cul­ti­vat­ed in almost every coun­try.

Every house­wife knows the ben­e­fi­cial prop­er­ties of goose­ber­ries, so var­i­ous dish­es and drinks are pre­pared on its basis:

  • goose­ber­ry jam, which is called roy­al;
  • com­potes, juices, fruit drinks;
  • sauces for meat and fish dish­es;
  • mar­malade;
  • wine;
  • sal­ads, etc.

The berry is ide­al for fill­ing in pies, dumplings, casseroles.

Vari­eties dif­fer not only in taste, but also in col­or, fruit size, ripen­ing time, and the pres­ence or absence of thorns. An inter­est­ing fact is that there is a men­tion of goose­ber­ries in chron­i­cles dat­ing back to the times of Kievan Rus. Shrubs were active­ly grown by the monks in the monastery gar­dens, and on the basis of berries and leaves, med­i­c­i­nal drinks were pre­pared that had a diuret­ic, choleretic and lax­a­tive effect.

Gooseberry Features

Goose­ber­ry is a peren­ni­al shrub. The plant belongs to the botan­i­cal goose­ber­ry fam­i­ly, the genus Grossu­lar­ia. The bush reach­es a height and crown diam­e­ter of a max­i­mum of 1 — 1.5 m. The ground part of the plant con­sists of branch­es of dif­fer­ent ages and basal shoots.

On the branch­es of most plant vari­eties there are sharp thorns, which are:

  • sin­gle;
  • dou­ble;
  • triples, etc.

Some vari­eties have thorns on each branch to the very top. Some­times there are few thorns on the upper part of annu­al shoots or they are com­plete­ly absent. There are also vari­eties that dif­fer in a small num­ber of thorns.

Goose­ber­ries are a round, oval, ovoid or pear-shaped berry, the gelati­nous shell of which con­tains many seeds. The col­or of the fruit may also dif­fer depend­ing on the vari­ety. The most com­mon shades:

  • yel­low;
  • yel­low-green;
  • green;
  • light green;
  • dark green;
  • pink;
  • red;
  • Dark red;
  • dark pur­ple;
  • black.

The shrub grows and gives high yields in almost all types of soil. How­ev­er, the plant does not tol­er­ate strong thick­en­ing and shad­ing. In the shade, the bush­es not only devel­op poor­ly, but also lose their resis­tance to pests and dis­eases. Berries ripen uneven­ly, their qual­i­ty dete­ri­o­rates sig­nif­i­cant­ly.

gooseberry benefits


The composition and calorie content of gooseberries

100 grams of berries con­tain approx­i­mate­ly 41 — 44 kcal:

  • pro­teins — 0.7 g (~ 3 kcal);
  • fats 0.2 g (~ 2 kcal);
  • car­bo­hy­drates 9.1 g (~ 36 kcal).

There­fore, fruits can be safe­ly includ­ed in the menu for peo­ple who con­trol their body weight. Goose­ber­ry dish­es are also low-calo­rie, but on the con­di­tion that sug­ar is not added dur­ing cook­ing. The com­po­si­tion of the berries con­tains vit­a­min A, C, E, B, PP.

The berries con­tain a large amount of min­er­als:

  • potas­si­um;
  • cop­per;
  • phos­pho­rus;
  • sodi­um;
  • flu­o­rine;
  • cal­ci­um;
  • mag­ne­sium.

The pulp is rich in such com­po­nents:

  • tan­nins;
  • pectin;
  • organ­ic acids: cit­ric, mal­ic;
  • flavonoids;
  • sero­tonin.

Planting gooseberries in open ground

A per­son who has his own plot strives to grow as many use­ful plants as pos­si­ble on it. On the ter­ri­to­ry of our coun­try, the com­mon goose­ber­ry is one of the most com­mon shrubs that grows in almost every gar­den.

Plant­i­ng shrubs is pos­si­ble both in spring and autumn. Gar­den­ers are advised to give pref­er­ence to late plant­i­ng, since in spring it is dif­fi­cult to have time to car­ry out all the prepara­to­ry manip­u­la­tions before the soil warms up and bud­ding begins. If the buds have already wok­en up and the soil has dried up, it will be much more dif­fi­cult for a young plant to take root. There­fore, in the fall it is eas­i­er to have time to do every­thing before frost, because after plant­i­ng the bush­es will already take on young roots, thanks to which the plant will sur­vive the win­ter with­out any prob­lems.

Oth­er ben­e­fits of autumn plant­i­ng:

  • Large selec­tion of seedlings. In autumn, nurs­eries offer cus­tomers a large selec­tion of seedlings for every taste and bud­get. There­fore, find­ing the right vari­ety and healthy plants will be easy. But for the spring there is every­thing that was not sold in the autumn peri­od.
  • Lots of free time. At the time of plant­i­ng, almost all gar­den work will be com­plet­ed, so you can slow­ly pre­pare a pit, seedlings. There is no need to rush to com­plete some­thing else, as is always the case in spring.
  • Ide­al con­di­tions for adap­ta­tion. In autumn, the air and soil tem­per­a­tures are low, and mois­ture is also often suf­fi­cient. All process­es in the aer­i­al part of the bush slow down, so resources are redi­rect­ed to the for­ma­tion of new roots. Thanks to this fea­ture, after the autumn plant­i­ng, almost all plants take root suc­cess­ful­ly.
  • Bush­es are easy to care for. Since there is more mois­ture in the soil in autumn than in spring, it is enough to water the plant once every 2 weeks. This is the whole care in the autumn.

What time to plant

In dif­fer­ent regions, weath­er con­di­tions are dif­fer­ent, so the tim­ing of spring plant­i­ng in each region is dif­fer­ent. In south­ern lat­i­tudes, prepara­to­ry and land­ing work can be start­ed in mid-March — ear­ly April. In the mid­dle lane, it is bet­ter to plant a plant in open ground in ear­ly April, because in March the soil has not yet warmed up enough. In cold regions, goose­ber­ries are plant­ed no ear­li­er than the end of April — the begin­ning of May.

Goose­ber­ry is a cold-resis­tant plant, the root sys­tem begins to func­tion active­ly already at a tem­per­a­ture of +1…+3 °C. Based on these data, it is nec­es­sary to choose the opti­mal land­ing date.

gooseberry care

If the plant is plant­ed in the fall, it does not require any care. It is enough to water it no more than 1 time in 2 — 3 weeks, and then on con­di­tion that the soil is dry due to a long absence of pre­cip­i­ta­tion. If frost is pre­dict­ed after plant­i­ng, you need to cov­er the plant using impro­vised mate­ri­als:

  • poly­eth­yl­ene film;
  • the cloth;
  • agrofi­bre, etc.

From spring, it is impor­tant to pro­vide prop­er care, on which not only devel­op­ment, but also pro­duc­tiv­i­ty, resis­tance to dis­eases and pests direct­ly depend. Spring care does not require a lot of time and effort. The basic rules to cre­ate the most com­fort­able con­di­tions for the growth and devel­op­ment of goose­ber­ries:

  • After each sea­son, the bush­es need to be cut. Prun­ing involves the removal of excess shoots, as well as thin­ning. In the spring, san­i­tary prun­ing is manda­to­ry, dur­ing which all frozen, dam­aged and dead shoots after win­ter­ing are removed.
  • Apply fer­til­iz­er 1 — 2 times a sea­son. For feed­ing, use organ­ic or ready-made min­er­al fer­til­iz­ers, intro­duc­ing into the near-stem cir­cle. After that, the sur­face must be care­ful­ly loos­ened.
  • In ear­ly spring, pour boil­ing water over the shoots, and then car­ry out pre­ven­tive treat­ment from pests and dis­eases.
  • Over­grown bush­es must be divid­ed and plant­ed, if this is not done, the yield will suf­fer.
  • Inspect the plant at least once every two weeks. This will help to detect the dis­ease or pests in time and elim­i­nate them until the bush is bad­ly dam­aged.

Goose­ber­ry care involves peri­od­ic loos­en­ing of the soil and removal of weeds. After the plant grows, the need for this will dis­ap­pear. If pre­cip­i­ta­tion falls accord­ing to the norms, the plant does not need water­ing, how­ev­er, in dry weath­er, it is advis­able to pour 2–3 buck­ets of water at least 1 time in two weeks. In cold regions, it is advis­able to wrap goose­ber­ries for the win­ter so that the plant does not die from crit­i­cal­ly low tem­per­a­tures.

gooseberry benefits and harms


Gooseberry varieties

There are 2 main groups of goose­ber­ry vari­eties:

  • Amer­i­can-Euro­pean hybrids;
  • Euro­pean.

There are oth­er cri­te­ria for deter­min­ing the vari­ety:

  • size;
  • col­or and shape of fruits;
  • mat­u­ra­tion time;
  • pro­duc­tiv­i­ty;
  • the pres­ence or absence of spikes.

The best vari­eties are:

  • “African”;
  • “Black Negus”;
  • “Lights of Krasno­grad”;
  • “Russ­ian yel­low”;
  • “White Tri­umph”;
  • “Phoenix”.

Pop­u­lar vari­eties with sweet pulp:

  • “Orlenok”;
  • “North­ern Cap­tain”;
  • “Donet­sk large-fruit­ed”.

Late and mid-sea­son:

  • “Sad­ko”;
  • “Mala­chite”;
  • “Cher­nomor”;
  • “Shift”.

Ear­ly vari­ety:

  • “Orlenok”;
  • “Spring”;
  • “Salute”.

Goose­ber­ries, the vari­ety of which is medi­um ear­ly:

  • “Flamin­go”;
  • “Affec­tion­ate”;
  • “Plum”;
  • Mid-sea­son:
  • “Prunes”;
  • “Kolobok”;
  • “Pax”.

gooseberry leaves

The leaves of the plant, on the basis of which decoc­tions and infu­sions are pre­pared, are char­ac­ter­ized by med­i­c­i­nal prop­er­ties and a ton­ic effect. Young leaves are rich in use­ful acids such as:

  • ascor­bic;
  • apple;
  • lemon;
  • folic.

The com­po­si­tion also includes retinol, vit­a­mins of group B, E, tan­nins.

Goose­ber­ry leaves, used to make med­i­c­i­nal drinks, bring great ben­e­fits to the human body:

  • strength­en­ing the immune defense;
  • nor­mal­iza­tion of blood cir­cu­la­tion;
  • improve­ment of vas­cu­lar paten­cy;
  • diuret­ic and choleretic effect;
  • an increase in hemo­glo­bin lev­els.

When to Harvest Gooseberries

Goose­ber­ries must be har­vest­ed after all the fruits on it are ful­ly ripe. Ripen­ing time depends on the con­di­tions of a par­tic­u­lar region:

  • In the south­ern regions, berries begin to ripen by ear­ly June.
  • In the north, the har­vest is har­vest­ed at the end of August.
  • In the cen­tral part of the coun­try, the fruits are ready for con­sump­tion in mid-August.

How to collect

The most com­mon har­vest­ing method is man­u­al. It is con­sid­ered safe for soft fruits, since when har­vest­ed by hand, their mechan­i­cal dam­age is min­i­mal.

Anoth­er com­mon­ly used har­vest­ing method is the use of a vibra­tor. In this case, the per­son must sup­port the branch with his hand and walk along it with a vibra­tor. The main dis­ad­van­tage of this method is that when using a vibra­tor, all the berries fall off, even those that are not yet ripe.

The third clean­ing option is to use a comb that is worn on the thumb. With one hand, you need to lift it ver­ti­cal­ly with a branch, and with the oth­er, on which the comb is fixed, care­ful­ly run along the stalks. Thus, the berries will quick­ly crum­ble into a con­tain­er and be min­i­mal­ly injured.

gooseberry jam benefits


Gooseberry storage

Keep­ing goose­ber­ries fresh for the win­ter is prob­lem­at­ic, because the berries are not able to main­tain their pre­sen­ta­tion and high taste for a long time. If you arrange the fruits in con­tain­ers and place in the refrig­er­a­tor, the max­i­mum shelf life will be up to 4 weeks. To keep the prod­uct until win­ter and enjoy it in cold weath­er, you can put it in the freez­er. The shelf life of frozen berries is 4–6 months. You can also pre­pare canned com­pote from goose­ber­ries, jam, pre­serves, the shelf life of which is also rel­a­tive­ly long — up to 6 months.

Benefits for the body

Goose­ber­ries, whose ben­e­fits for the body are very large, can be includ­ed in the menu by both adults and chil­dren. The ben­e­fi­cial effect of ripe fruits is as fol­lows:

Strength­en­ing blood ves­sels and improv­ing the func­tion­ing of the car­dio­vas­cu­lar sys­tem as a whole.

  • Nor­mal­iza­tion of blood pres­sure.
  • Low­er­ing blood sug­ar and cho­les­terol lev­els.
  • Recov­ery of the body after stress and psy­cho-emo­tion­al over­load.
  • Immu­ni­ty boost.
  • Accel­er­a­tion of the diges­tion process by stim­u­lat­ing peri­stal­sis.
  • Improv­ing the pro­duc­tion and out­flow of bile.
  • Elim­i­na­tion of intesti­nal dis­or­ders — diar­rhea or chron­ic con­sti­pa­tion.
  • Accel­er­a­tion of recov­ery in inflam­ma­to­ry process­es.
  • Nor­mal­iza­tion of metab­o­lism and func­tions of the hematopoi­et­ic sys­tem.

A sim­i­lar effect on the human body has fresh­ly squeezed goose­ber­ry juice, which can be freely replaced by berries.


It is use­ful for old­er men to con­sume fresh goose­ber­ries, as they have a stim­u­lat­ing, ton­ic effect. By diver­si­fy­ing the diet with goose­ber­ry fruits, it will be pos­si­ble to achieve the fol­low­ing results:

  • sig­nif­i­cant­ly reduce the risk of myocar­dial infarc­tion and stroke;
  • improve blood cir­cu­la­tion, due to which regen­er­a­tive process­es are acti­vat­ed at the cel­lu­lar lev­el;
  • increase the body’s immu­ni­ty and resis­tance to viral and infec­tious dis­eases;
  • nor­mal­ize hor­mon­al lev­els;
  • strength­en the ner­vous sys­tem.


Goose­ber­ries, which are low in calo­ries com­pared to oth­er types of berries, are use­ful to include in the diet of women who are watch­ing their weight or are in the process of reduc­ing it.

How­ev­er, dietary prop­er­ties are not the only ben­e­fits of fruits for the female body. Reg­u­lar con­sump­tion of berries at any age con­tributes to:

  • sta­bi­liza­tion of the hor­mon­al back­ground;
  • reduc­tion of patho­log­i­cal symp­toms that devel­op in menopause;
  • nor­mal­iza­tion of the cen­tral ner­vous sys­tem;
  • get­ting rid of depres­sion;
  • improv­ing the gen­er­al con­di­tion of the body;
  • strength­en­ing the pro­tec­tive func­tion;
  • increas­ing resis­tance to the neg­a­tive impact of exter­nal fac­tors;
  • an increase in hemo­glo­bin lev­els, which is espe­cial­ly impor­tant dur­ing the peri­od of bear­ing a child;
  • strength­en­ing hair and nails;
  • can­cer pre­ven­tion.

It is also desir­able to include this fruit in the diet of women who have a men­stru­al cycle. With reg­u­lar use, men­stru­a­tion sta­bi­lizes, pro­ceeds more calm­ly, with­out such unpleas­ant symp­toms as abdom­i­nal pain, impaired gen­er­al well-being, weak­ness, drowsi­ness.

frozen gooseberries



A child who is 7 months old can already try goose­ber­ry puree, jam or juice as a first com­ple­men­tary food. The berry is aller­genic, so it must be intro­duced into the diet care­ful­ly and grad­u­al­ly. Ripe fruits will help to sat­u­rate the chil­dren’s body with use­ful vit­a­mins and microele­ments, strength­en­ing the immune sys­tem and increas­ing resis­tance to sea­son­al acute res­pi­ra­to­ry infec­tions and acute res­pi­ra­to­ry viral infec­tions.

Oth­er ben­e­fi­cial prop­er­ties of goose­ber­ries for a child’s body:

  • improved metab­o­lism;
  • nor­mal­iza­tion of weight;
  • reduc­ing the risk of devel­op­ing der­ma­to­log­i­cal dis­eases;
  • increased immu­ni­ty;
  • strength­en­ing the ner­vous sys­tem;
  • improve­ment of brain activ­i­ty;
  • pre­ven­tion of iron defi­cien­cy ane­mia.

Contraindications to the use of gooseberries

The fruits of north­ern grapes are for­bid­den to be used by peo­ple who have been diag­nosed with such dis­eases and dis­or­ders:

  • indi­vid­ual intol­er­ance;
  • pep­tic ulcer in the acute stage;
  • col­i­tis;
  • ente­ro­col­i­tis;
  • decom­pen­sat­ed dia­betes mel­li­tus.

There­fore, goose­ber­ries, the ben­e­fits and harms of which are incom­pa­ra­ble, are rec­om­mend­ed to be added to the diet of peo­ple suf­fer­ing from gas­troin­testi­nal dis­eases only after con­sult­ing a gas­troen­terol­o­gist. This will help pre­vent the exac­er­ba­tion of the dis­ease and pre­vent the devel­op­ment of com­pli­ca­tions.

Harm to the body

Peo­ple suf­fer­ing from dis­eases of the diges­tive sys­tem should use goose­ber­ries with extreme cau­tion, as they increase acid­i­ty and exac­er­bate patholo­gies such as:

  • stom­ach and duo­de­nal ulcer;
  • col­i­tis;
  • ente­ro­col­i­tis.

It is not rec­om­mend­ed to exceed the allow­able dai­ly dose of 100 grams, oth­er­wise the risk of devel­op­ing uncon­trolled diar­rhea and dehy­dra­tion increas­es. If an adult or child has a ten­den­cy to food aller­gies, goose­ber­ries can also be harm­ful, pro­vok­ing an acute aller­gic reac­tion. With dia­betes, it is also for­bid­den to abuse berries, since exceed­ing the dai­ly dose can pro­voke a sharp jump in blood sug­ar.

Gooseberry in cosmetology

Agrus fruits are active­ly used in cos­me­tol­ogy. On the basis of ripe berries, masks and lotions are pre­pared that have a whiten­ing and cleans­ing effect.

Green berry puree can be used at home to make vit­a­min and mois­tur­iz­ing masks. Berries that have been frozen do not lose their ben­e­fi­cial prop­er­ties. With their help, you can get rid of dark cir­cles and bags under the eyes, tone the skin, make it more elas­tic. To do this, let the berries thaw a lit­tle, and then apply to the prob­lem area for 5 to 10 min­utes.

Masks, lotions, ton­ics based on berries and goose­ber­ry leaves are ide­al for any type of skin, even prob­lem­at­ic. Reg­u­lar­ly using the select­ed tool, you will be able to get rid of such defects as:

  • acne, acne;
  • uneven col­or and microre­lief;
  • stand up;
  • dark spots;
  • enlarged pores.
gooseberry fruit benefits and harms


What to cook from gooseberries

In the sea­son when there are a lot of berries on the bush, you can make goose­ber­ry com­pote. The drink has a ton­ic, ton­ic effect. The recipe for clas­sic agrus com­pote is sim­ple:

  1. Sort the berries, remov­ing spoiled fruits, twigs, and oth­er debris. It is advis­able to remove the stalks.
  2. Rinse under run­ning water and let drain.
  3. Boil water, add sug­ar to taste and boil for 1–2 min­utes.
  4. Pour the goose­ber­ries into the boil­ing sweet liq­uid and leave to sim­mer for 5–10 min­utes.
  5. Then remove the pan from the heat, cov­er with a lid and let it brew until it cools com­plete­ly.
  6. Drink chilled drink

The fol­low­ing recipe will help pre­pare goose­ber­ries for the win­ter:

  1. Sort ripe berries, rinse well under run­ning water.
  2. Put the main ingre­di­ent in a blender bowl and add sug­ar in a ratio of 1:1.
  3. Beat sug­ar and goose­ber­ries until a puree-like con­sis­ten­cy is formed.
  4. Put the result­ing mass in glass jars, cov­er with an air­tight lid, store in the refrig­er­a­tor.

Goose­ber­ries, the recipe for which is sim­ple and afford­able, can be added to the dough for desserts. Deli­cious and ten­der are obtained:

  • pies;
  • cakes;
  • casseroles;
  • cup­cakes;
  • strudel;
  • bis­cuits, etc.

Agrus jam pre­pared accord­ing to this recipe brings ben­e­fits to the body:

  1. Pre­pare the ingre­di­ents: goose­ber­ries — 600 g, sug­ar — 500 g.
  2. Sort the berries, remove debris, cut off the tails on both sides, rinse under run­ning water.
  3. Trans­fer the goose­ber­ries to a saucepan, add sug­ar, mix and refrig­er­ate for 3–4 hours.
  4. Put the con­tain­er with the con­tents on a slow fire, boil.
  5. Boil jam on fire for 5 min­utes, then remove from heat, let cool.
  6. Put the pot back on the stove, bring to a boil and sim­mer for anoth­er 5 min­utes.
  7. Repeat the same steps for the third time.
  8. Arrange the hot jam in ster­il­ized jars, roll up the lids and leave to cool in a warm place.

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