Black Currant (2023)

QuantityDiscountPer Item Price
0-99 0% $8.00
100-499 25% $6.00
500-999 35% $5.20
1000+ 50% $4.00
QuantityDiscountPer Item Price
0-99 0% $8.00
100-499 25% $6.00
500-999 35% $5.20
1000+ 50% $4.00
QuantityDiscountPer Item Price
0-99 0% $8.00
100-499 25% $6.00
500-999 35% $5.20
1000+ 50% $4.00
QuantityDiscountPer Item Price
0-99 0% $8.00
100-499 25% $6.00
500-999 35% $5.20
1000+ 50% $4.00
QuantityDiscountPer Item Price
0-99 0% $8.00
100-499 25% $6.00
500-999 35% $5.20
1000+ 50% $4.00
SKU: N/A Categories: ,

**Quantities are very limited for 2023. We are limiting orders per cultivar:

  • Blackcomb: 500
  • Nicola: none
  • Stikine: 100
  • Tahsis: 50
  • Whistler: 100

ABOUT McGINNIS CULTIVARS

McGinnis black currants were developed by McGinnis Berry Crops Limited in British Columbia, Canada through decades of breeding. These cultivars are the only new, commercial black currant cultivars bred within North America in over 50 years – since Consort and siblings were first bred to have resistance to White Pine Blister Rust. Currently, five cultivars have been released and are available for purchase. Additional cultivars are under evaluation for potential release in the coming years. McGinnis cultivars lead the industry with high yields, disease resistance, and outstanding flavor profiles. Please contact us if you are not sure which cultivars are right for your farm.

Canopy is the exclusive US source for McGinnis black currant plants. Canopy took over US nursery production after Dick McGinnis retired in 2021. We can also ship bulk orders to Canada. During this transition time, there is a major plant material bottleneck. This has severely limited plants sales in 2022 and 2023.

PROTECTION

All McGinnis cultivars are protected. Asexual propagation of cultivars is illegal. A signed non-propagation agreement is required prior to shipment.

Canopy is working with the Savanna Institute to continue the McGinnis breeding legacy. Novel crosses are being made and offspring evaluated to develop the next generation of top currant cultivars for the North American industry. All black currant plant prices include a 15% royalty fee, which goes directly to the Savanna Institute to support ongoing breeding efforts.

GROWING CONDITIONS

Recommended plant spacing is :

  • Machine harvest: 2′ within rows and at least 12′ between rows, although some mechanical harvesters require greater spacing between rows.
  • Hand harvest: 4′ within rows and at least 8′ between rows (though keep in mind your tractor/mower width!)

Black currants require the following soil/climate conditions:

  • Soil depth: at least 12″
  • Soil pH: 5.5 – 7 (if you are outside this range, you can adjust with soil ammendments)
  • Chilling hours: at least 800
  • USDA plant hardiness zones: 2-9
  • Summer days with max temperature greater than 90˚F: There is no hard and fast rule on this, but, in general, if you are in zones 7+ you will want to make sure that your currant plants are at least partially shaded during the hottest portions of the day.

PLUGS

WE *DO* SHIP PLUGS. All 2023 currants are plugs. Plugs are 2″ in diameter and 5″ deep.

Blackcomb
Blackcomb (Ojebyn x Titania) is a high yielding variety that has high levels of resistance to foliar diseases (mildew, White Pine Blister Rust), vigorous growth habit, and tolerance to late spring frost. Blackcomb has produced yields in replicated trials in British Columbia that were more than 50% higher than Titania and Ben Alder with fruit size 20% larger than Titania. Flowering is late mid-season and this variety has demonstrated better tolerance to late spring frost than Titania. Well suited to machine harvest. Canada Plant Breeders Rights #5345  
Nicola
Nicola (Orlovskaya serenada x Titania) is the latest McGinnis cultivar release. Nicola has high yields, great resistance to mildew, and good resistance to White Pine Blister Rust. Flavor is excellent. Well suited to machine harvest. Canada Plant Breeders Rights #6642; US Plant Patent #34,161  
Stikine
Stikine (Zusha x Titania) is has an incredible flavor profile, high levels of resistance to White Pine Blister Rust and other foliar diseases, very high yields, and suitability to machine harvest. One potential drawback is its short hang time. Stikine is best processed into juice or offered to fresh market customers. The resulting flavor profile is much better suited to North American consumer preferences. In some areas of North American, Stikine has had issues with a fungal pathogen known as cane dieback (Botryosphaeria ribis).  
Tahsis
Tahsis (Bieloruskaya sladkaya x Titania) scored the highest yields in replicated trials in coastal British Columbia. Flowers late mid-season, tolerant of late frost, has high levels of resistance to White Pine Blister Rust, resistant to mildew, and has very large fruit (larger than Ben Sarek). Growth habit is spreading and displays the fruit well, which makes it ideal for hand harvest or U-pick. NOT suitable for machine harvest.  
Whistler
Whistler (Ben Tirran x Bieloruskaya sladkaya) has high yields, fair resistance to mildew, and good resistance to White Pine Blister Rust. Growth habit is slightly spreading with medium vigor. Flowering is late-mid season with good tolerance for late spring frost. Yields in replicated British Columbia trials were more than 50% higher than Titania and Ben Alder. Juice quality is excellent. Well suited to machine harvest. Small to medium fruit size observed on the West Coast, but produces some of the largest fruit in Central/Midwest regions.
 
Disease Rating Key
  • 0 = Immune
  • 1 = Highly resistant
  • 2 = Mildly susceptible
  • 3 = Moderately susceptible
  • 4 = Highly susceptible
 
(1)
Currants exhibit high genotype x environment interaction, meaning that cultivars perform differently depending on the environment they are grown in. The highest yielding cultivar in one climate, may not be the top performer in another climate. Data is shown above for two contrasting climates: Urbana, IL, USA and British Columbia, Canada to provide a starting point for cultivar information. If you are unsure about which cultivar will be best for you, we recommend ordering some plants of each cultivar and then seeing what works best in your area before placing a larger order.  
(2)
No significant difference in the timing of leaf out or flowering has been observed among the cultivars in Urbana. Leaf out occurs around April 1st, and flowering occurs around April 20th.  
(3)
Currant cane dieback or currant cane blight (Botryosphaeria ribis) is not a significant concern in all areas of North America. You can find information about the disease HERE.