This fruit is not much grown in North America, which is a pity. The fruit is tart and flavorful, like a cross between an apple and a blackberry. Gooseberry shrubs struggle in the heat and dry soil here, so ours grow in a partly shaded area near a large apple tree. Their lack of popularity may be due to the fact that federal and state governments banned them for many years, fearing that they would spread a blister fungus to white pine. This fungus uses gooseberries and its relatives as an alternate host. The bans have now been lifted and many varieties are now available to American gardeners.