|NOT Burning Bush! This a Red Chokeberry,|
Aronia arbutifolia 'Brilliantissima' growing at the edge of a parking lot.
|Flowers of Red Chokeberry in late May-early June|
|Pair of Red Chokeberries in a mixed native planting, |
The Black Chokeberry is a smaller suckering shrub, growing to 3-6’ tall and wide. In addition to its crimson fall foliage it produces quantities of black berries that are eaten up by wildlife by November. Unlike the Red Chokeberry, the black berries, while tart, are more palatable and are used to make jellies and pemmican. These berries are notable for containing high levels of antioxidants and minerals. I went out to sample a berry, but they were already dried up; the taste was reminiscent of a dried fig. Next season I will take a taste while they still have some juice in them. The native range for Black Chokeberry is in the cooler climates of North America, mainly in the Northeast, from Michigan to Maine. There are several cultivars of Black Chokeberry available. The one I have is called Iroquois Beauty™ (‘Morton’). It is listed as a dwarf, growing to about 4’ tall and wide. I have not done any significant pruning in the 5 years I've had this plant.
|Black Chokeberry, mid-Fall color.|
|Same plant at peak color in early November|