Native to North America, and found in the northern United States and southern Canada, from Montana to the east coast and south to Illinois and West Virginia.
A perennial shrub that can form thick, impenetrable growth due to its spiny stems. Reproduction is from seeds. Plants commonly grow in semi-open forested areas of dappled sunlight.
Mature plants form dense shrubs over 6 feet in height, with woody stems and many branches. The stems of this species of Ribes are armed with a stout, long spine at the base of each leaf or a junction of a branch and stem. Leaves are softly hairy and dark green, on a short stalk. The leaf has a deep cleft on each side that divides it into 3 large lobes. The margins are deeply serrate, sometimes forming additional small lobes. The flowers are small and inconspicuous and the fruit that forms is a large green berry, turning red as it matures. These may occur in groups of 2 or more on long stalks.
Characteristicts Important to Control:
Physical removal may be needed to control this plant where its growth is a problem. It can be effectively killed with a systemic herbicide, but the stems will persist and eventually need to be removed if the ground is to be cleared.