Blackcurrants are delightful, generous cropping fruit bushes that have been grown in the British Isles for over 500 years. Native to the temperate parts of central and northern Europe and northern Asia, they have aromatic leaves and produce flowers in racemes up to 8cm long, containing 10-20 flowers each in June. The flowers change colour from pink/green to red as the clusters fully emerge. They are then followed by bunches of small, glossy dark purple-black fruits that develop along the stems in mid-summer and can be harvested by hand. Blackcurrant plants are easy to grow and more tolerant of heavy soils than any other currant. They are also highly versatile - succeeding as part of a fruit collection in the border, an ornamental hedge or container-grown on the patio to save space in smaller gardens. Once planted, blackcurrants remain productive for almost 20 years.