Black Chokeberry Bush - Aronia melanocarpa
Black Chokeberry Bush is native to the eastern United States, the Black Chokeberry Bush is a desirable addition to any landscape. At three to eight feet high and with a spread of two to six feet, the Black Chokeberry can be used to form hedges or to fill in gardens and natural landscapes. Its tendency to produce suckers allows it to spread easily and aids in erosion control. It naturally forms a rounded shape and does not require pruning. While the Black Chokeberry prefers full sun, it will grow well in partial shade and is hardy to USDA zones three to eight. It is resistant to most diseases and pests. Black Chokeberries are also tolerant of salts and compacted, clay-like soils. They accept a wide range of moisture conditions but prefer to not be waterlogged for long. Propagation is typically through suckers but can also occur via seeds. Flowering occurs in mid spring, when showy, white, aromatic flowers appear in two to three inch clusters. The flowers give way to berries that are a quarter to a half inch in size. The berries ripen in late summer to early fall and are a deep purple-black color when ripe. Berry production is enhanced by full sun exposure. The berries typically remain on Black Chokeberry bushes into the winter season, attracting hungry wildlife throughout the winter months. The berries are edible when cooked and can be used in baked goods, jellies, juices, and preserves. The berries have numerous health benefits because they contain an extremely high concentration of antioxidants. Black Chokeberry bushes are also valuable ornamentals for any landscape. In addition to their beautiful spring flowers, they are resplendent in the fall with vibrant displays of red-orange to purple leaves. When allowed to form a dense group, they provide an effective windbreak for gardens and shelter for numerous types of wildlife.
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