Gooseberry Facts

Gooseberry Facts
Gooseberry is deciduous shrub that belongs to the currant family. It originates from Europe, northwestern Africa and southeast Asia. Gooseberry can be found in temperate areas of North America and Siberia also. It prefers areas with cold, freezing winters and humid summers. Wild gooseberry grows in the alpine thicket, rocky areas, woodlands and hedgerows. It prefers fertile, loamy soils and areas that provide enough sun (it also thrives in the partial shade). People cultivate gooseberry as a source of food.
Interesting Gooseberry Facts:
Gooseberry grows in the form of shrub. It has woody branches with long spines which grow from the axils of leaves. It can reach 4 to 6 feet in height and 6 feet in width.
Gooseberry has deeply lobed leaves that can be dark green or grey-green colored (grayish leaves are covered with layer of fine hairs). Leaves are alternately arranged on the branches.
Gooseberry produces small, bell-shaped, green flowers. They grow on the lateral branches either individually or arranged in the groups of up to 4 flowers.
Gooseberry blooms during the spring and attracts various insects. Flowers are also suitable for the pollination by wind. Bisexual flowers of gooseberry (flowers with both types of reproductive organs) are able to perform self-pollination in the case that insects or wind fail to pollinate the flowers.
Fruit of gooseberry is small berry. It can be roundish, pear-shaped, elongated or oval. Color of the fruit depends on the variety. It can be yellow, green, white, red, purple, or nearly black-colored. Skin on the surface is covered with prominent veins. It can be smooth or hairy. Each berry contains 15 to 30 miniature seed.
One gooseberry bush produces 8 to 10 pounds of fruit per season.
Gooseberry propagates via seed and cuttings.
Gooseberry is good source of vitamin C and vitamins of the B group and minerals such as copper, calcium, phosphorus and manganese. 100 g of fruit contains only 44 calories.
Gooseberry has sweet, slightly tart taste. These berries can be consumed raw or as ingredient of muffins, pies, fruit salads and ice-creams. Gooseberries are often used for the preparation of jellies and jams. They can be also combined with dishes made of meat and fish.
Jostaberry is a hybrid created by interbreeding of gooseberry and blackcurrants.
Goosberries are also known as "fayberries" because of the ancient belief that fairies used bushes of gooseberry to hide from danger.
Cooling properties of the gooseberry fruit were used during the Middle Ages in treatment of fever.
Gooseberries contain compounds that can prevent development of certain types of cancer, neurological disorders and inflammation.
Cultivated varieties of gooseberry are targeted by magpie moth, V-moth and gooseberry sawfly. These insects eat and produce significant damage on the leaves of gooseberry.
Gooseberry can produce fruit and survive at least 20 years in the wild.

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