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Moist woods and swamps.
Mostly restricted to coastal states. Newfoundland south to MS, inland to central NH and west central NY.
Clumping bush or small tree to 8 m. Leaves alternate, elliptic to obovate, rounded at base, to 8 cm, finely serrate. At anthesis the leaves are densely tomentose below, still folded and less than half expanded. Racemes erect; petals 4-12 mm; pedicels 5-15 mm; ovary glabrous at summit. Fruit deep purple to black.
Flowers April to June
Wetland Indicator: Facultative Upland
The fruit of this species is edible and sweet but also bitter. Serviceberries are useful for landscaping as they provide flowers in the spring and ornamental fruit in the summer. Fall color ranges from gold to red, although the leaves tend to fall early. The smooth gray bark is also attractive.
Dirr, Michael A.
1998. Manual of Woody Landscape Plants: Their Identification, Ornamental
Characteristics, Culture, Propagation and Uses.
5th ed. Champaign, Illiois: Stipes Publishing L.L.C.
Gleason, Henry A.
and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States
and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.
The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY
© Michael Hough 2004