Goose berries

Asked May 17, 2013, 3:41 PM EDT

What are the regulations on growing Goose Berries in Michigan? Are they not allowed to be grown in this state? A customer said they tried to order some, but the company would not ship them to Michigan.

Ontonagon County Michigan

1 Response

Cultivation of the genus "Ribes" which includes currants and gooseberries is restricted in Michigan. Currants and gooseberries are alternate hosts for the disease White Pine Blister Rust (WPBR), which kills white pines. To restrict the spread of this disease to this important Michigan forest tree, wild Ribes can be destroyed and cultivation is prohibited. I believe this restriction applies to all the UP and Northern Lower Peninsula. In the southern 2 tiers of counties and the SE portion of the state south of Saginaw Bay cultivation is allowed with a permit. It is my understanding that the regulations have been relaxed so that the cultivation of WPBR resistant varieties is allowed with a permit. Your client should contact the MDARD to see if they will issue a permit in the UP.