FNRB - New "Jeanne" Gooseberries: Delicious—and Pest-Resistant!

Summertime treats of tomorrow might include a chilled slice of gooseberry pie, made with a luscious new, dark-red gooseberry called "Jeanne." Scientists with the ARS National Clonal Germplasm Repository, Corvallis, Ore., made the berry available to other researchers and to plant nurseries for the first time this year, following more than 12 years of lab, greenhouse and outdoor tests.

Jeanne gooseberry plants each produce about 3 pounds of sweet, good-sized fruit every year—an impressive harvest that should please commercial growers and backyard gardeners alike.

Jeanne is named for Cheryl Jeanne Gunning, who worked at the Oregon laboratory and is now deceased.

In contrast to most other gooseberries, this plump newcomer is resistant to white pine blister rust, a disease that's a cosmetic problem to gooseberry leaves but can be devastating to pines. The gooseberry also fends off the microbe that causes powdery mildew, the berry's worst disease enemy. What's more, the plant doesn't succumb to attacks by aphids and sawflies.