Blackcurrant Diseases, Pests and Problems

Birds do like blackcurrants, so cover the bushes with netting as the fruits start to ripen.

Flowers may be damaged by frost so it may be worth covering the bushes with horticultural fleece if late frosts have been forecast.

Currant Blister AphidCurrant Blister Aphid causes the leaves to blister and turn red. The plant will continue to grow unharmed and the aphid does not appear to affect the blackcurrant crop. It is not necessary to treat currant blister aphid. If you wish to do something, then spray with horticultural soap or a mild solution of washing up liquid to control the aphids.
Big bud mite causes the buds to become swollen during winter. This reduces yields but can also spread reversion disease. Destroy any infested buds as soon as they are seen.

Blackcurrant gall midge has tiny white maggots which prevent leaves from reaching their full size, causing them to dry up and die. Varieties such as Ben Connan and Ben Sarek are resistant. There is no cure available for the amateur gardener.

Reversion disease is caused by a virus which is transmitted by big bud mite. Leaves are a different shape, are slightly yellow and have unusually small main veins. Flowering and cropping are heavily reduced. Affected plants should be removed immediately. Always buy plants that are certified disease-free.

American gooseberry mildew is a powdery white-grey fungus affecting the leaves, stems and fruits. Remove any affected branches to allow air to circulate, and avoid the use of nitrogen rich fertilizers.

Also, take a look at our page 10 Ways to Avoid Plant Pests, Diseases and Problems for some general advice.


1. Growing Blackcurrants – QUICKSTART GUIDE
2. Planting Blackcurrants – Help on planting blackcurrant bushes
3. Blackcurrent Plant Care – How to maintain a healthy and productive blueberry bush
4. Picking and Freezing Blackcurrants – How to pick, store and freeze your blackcurrants
5. Blackcurrant Tips – Some tips to help you get the most out of your blackcurrant bushes
6. Blackcurrant Diseases, Pests and Problems – Some help if things go wrong with your blackcurrant bushes
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