Berry trees and shrubs


Many kinds of trees and shrubs are worth growing for the sake of their brightly colored fruits, apart from any other ornamental characteristics they may possess. Not all the fruits borne by the following trees and shrubs are true berries, but for the sake of convenient reference these kinds are grouped together here.

Rockspray or Cotoneaster. Cotoneasters are particularly attractive. Some kinds, C. frigida, for example, grow into small trees 30 ft. high or form large, wide-spreading bushes. C. frigida itself is very beautiful when covered with its bunches of bright red fruits. There are many other attractive kinds, of which C. Dielsiana, C. bullata, C. horizontalis, C. microphylla, C. salicifolia, and C. Simonsii, all with red berries, are very showy in autumn. Birds take most of the Cotoneaster berries during early winter, but C. rotundifolia retains its scarlet fruits until spring.

The Firethorns. Pyracantha coccinea and its variety Lalandii are well-known evergreen shrubs which bear large clusters of orange-red fruits during autumn and winter. Several other kinds of Pyracantha are found to fruit just as well, notably P. crenulata and its variety P. Rogersiana and P. atalantioides. P. angustifolia, which bears orange-colored fruits, is not so hardy as the others.

The Wild Roses. The fruits of many of the Wild Roses are beautiful in autumn. The hips or fruits of the Japanese Rosa rugosa are apple-like in appearance, more than an inch in diameter and of glossy red color; they can be used for making jelly. Another Rose with large fruits is R. Roxburghii; its greenish-yellow fruits are fragrant and covered with spiny growths. Other Roses with attractive red fruits are: R. californica; R. canina; R. carolina; R. Moyesii and var. Fargesii; R. horrida; R. involuta; R. pendulina; R. tomentosa, and R. virginiana.

Japanese Quince and Hawthorn. The dwarf Japanese Quince, Chaenomeles japonica, produces yellow, apple-like fruits, over an inch wide, that can be made into jelly. Many of the Hawthorns are very showy when in fruit, notably the Cockspur Thorn, Crataegus Crus-galli, and the Washington Thorn, C. Phaenopryum, as well as C. coloradensis, and C. prunifolia. These all have red fruits. C. Lavallei (Carrierei) bears large orange-red fruits that last well into the winter.

Hawthorns with Yellow Fruits. C. tanacetifolia produces yellow fruits that are very fragrant and edible, C. chrysocarpa has golden fruits, C. Azarolus bears sweet edible fruits that are red and yellow when ripe. The fruits of C. punctata are red, spotted with brown, and those of the variety aurea are yellow.

The European Mountain Ash, Sorbus Aucuparia, is well known for its large clusters of coral-red fruits, but there is a variety with yellow fruits. The American Mountain Ash, Sorbus americana, and more particularly its variety nana, are very attractive trees with bright-red fruits, and equally beautiful is the ferny leaved, pink-fruited S. Vilmorinii. The White Beam, Sorbus Aria, and several closely allied trees bear abundant crops of red or orange-red fruits.

Ornamental Crabs. Some of the Crab Apples are very showy, particularly the red-fruited Malus prunifolia, and its yellow variety Rinkii, and the redor yellow-fruited M. baccata. The named varieties of Crab, e.g., Hyslop, Hope, and Transcendent, have large colored fruits which are favored for jelly making.

The Barberries. Many kinds of Berberis are very beautiful in fruit, particularly the red-fruited B. Wilsonae and its varieties Stapfiana and subcaulialata, B. polyantha, B. chinensis, B. koreana, B. Thunbergii, B. rubrostilla, and numerous hybrids.

The Spindle Trees. Several kinds of Euonymus are attractive by reason of the highly colored fruits, which split open and disclose equally brightly colored seeds. Good kinds are E. europaeus, the Spindle Tree of Europe; E. sachalinensis, E. americanus, E. latifolius, E. oxyphyllus, E. atropurpureus, E. Bungeanus, and E. yedoensis. The outer part of the fruit is in most cases of a reddish hue, the seeds being orange.

Bittersweet. Both the American Bittersweet, Celastrus scandens, and the Asiatic C. orbiculatus are vigorous climbing plants, closely allied to Euonymus; the outer part of their fruit is yellow and the seeds are orange.

Bush Honeysuckles and Hollies. Some of the bush Honeysuckles bear handsome fruits, one of the most attractive being Lonicera tatarica, with scarlet, translucent berries. Hollies are always attractive, the red-berried kinds being more showy than those with yellow fruits. To get good crops of Holly berries it is necessary with most kinds to plant one male bush among every six or eight berry-bearing or female bushes. The Hollies include not only evergreen kinds such as Ilex opaca, I. cornuta, I. Aquifolium, I. Cassine, and I. vomitoria, but also deciduous species, notably I.laevigata and I. verticillata.

Magnolia and Snowberry. Magnolias are often conspicuous by reason of the erect red fruits, particularly M. obovata and M. tripetala. Viburnums also produce showy berries, notably V. Opulus, V. betulifolium, and V. lobophyllum, all of which have red fruits. Snowberries or Symphoricarpos bear round white fruits, although one kind, S. orbiculatus, bears red ones.

Viburnums. Among this group are included some of the finest of ornamental fruiting shrubs. Often the coloring of the fruits changes markedly as maturity approaches—for instance, in V. cassinoides, from green to red to black. V. dilatatum has scarlet fruits that remain long on the bushes. V. setigerum has great drooping bunches of scarlet fruits. V. Opulus, V. trilobum and V. Wrightii are other good red-fruited kinds. The fruits of V. prunifolium, as they ripen, first become red and then black; the fruits of V. Lentago, V. acerifolium and V. nudum are black; those of V. dentatum and V. rufidulum are blue; those of V. dilatatum variety xanthocarpum and of V. Opulus variety xanthocarpum are yellow.

Some Other Good Kinds. Berried trees and shrubs of worth are included in many other genera. Ardissia berries are red or black; Aronia berries are red or black; Callicarpa includes a number of kinds that have bright violet-colored berries; Cornus includes kinds With red and kinds with yellow fruits; Elaeagnus has berries that are predominantly silvery yellow or red; Hippophae berries are orange-colored and remain attractive for a long period; Idesia bears huge clusters of orange-red or red berries; Taxus (Yews) includes evergreens that bear attractive red fruits; Myrica is remarkable for the waxy gray berries that are borne in profusion; Nandina bears decorative panicles of bright red berries; Rhamnus has black berries; Skimmias are handsome evergreens that bear red fruits; Symplocos bear beautiful turquoise-blue berries.

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