Plant Type: Dormant, bare-root
Soil Type: Clay, Loamy & Sandy Soils
Site Selection: Full Sun, Partial Sun
Mature Height & Width: 20-25' Height and 20-25' Spread
Growth Rate: Moderate - 12-24" per year once established
Moisture Requirements: Average soils
The lightly scented white flowers of this Serviceberry put on a pretty show in the spring. Late summer brings purplish-black berries which are juicy and sweet. Very tasty if you can get to them before the birds! The leaves put on a red to orange autum show, and won't require raking. This highly branched shrub can be pruned to form a small multi-stemmed tree. It makes a perfect understory tree.
The Allegheny Serviceberry is also known as smooth shadbush, and is in the Rosaceae family.
Serviceberry is a great choice for almost any landscape. This medium to large sized bush works well naturalizing a field or along the woods edge. The Serviceberry makes a great hedge or privacy screen with wonderful wildlife benefits. In the urban landscape, it is a favorite ornamental bush which is routinely placed near patios or decks. The open crown produces a light shade. Come autumn, this plant produces nice shades of yellow, orange and red before dropping its leaves. As a bonus, Serviceberry is also tolerant of Black Walnut toxicity.
The berries produced by the Allegheny Serviceberry are a favorite of bakers for jam, pies and cobblers. Mature fruit is generally ready for harvest 45 to 60 days after the very early bloom; and typically ripen in late June or early July. Berry crops will generally be available to harvest within 3 to 5 years of planting and will produce an average of 4 to 6 lbs. of berries each season.
Common uses for Allegheny Serviceberry include:
- Edible berries are rich in nutrients and antioxidants
- Attracts many types of birds and wildlife
- Pleasant orange, yellow and red fall color
- Makes a great hedge or privacy screen
- Ornamental and specimen plant
- Planted near patios and decks
- Great low to mid level section of a windbreak
- Planting around Black Walnut or Butternut, as Serviceberry are juglone toxicity resistant
The shrubby growth of the Allegheny Serviceberry makes a great cover and nesting habitat for songbirds. Bears enjoy the fruit as do flocks of Cedar Waxwings which will gorge themselves on the berries in springtime. While the fruit produced is a favorite for Baltimore Orioles, Brown Thrashers, Catbirds and Rose Breasted Grosbeaks, the berries have been documented to be eaten by at least 35 species of birds. Twenty-three types of animals also feed on the Serviceberry. Chipmunks, squirrels, beaver, bears, mule and white-tailed deer, moose and elk are among those animals.