Amelanchier, also known as shadbush, shadwood or shadblow, serviceberry, juneberry, or wild-plum, is a genus of about 20 species of deciduous shrubs and small trees in the Rose family (Rosaceae).
Amelanchier laevis, commomly called Allegheny serviceberry, is a small, deciduous, usually multi-trunked understory tree or tall shrub which is native to thickets, open woods, sheltered slopes and wood margins in Eastern North America where it typically grows 15-25' (less frequently to 40') tall. It features showy, 5-petaled, slightly fragrant, white flowers in drooping clusters which appear in early spring (April) before the leaves. Flowers give way to small, round, edible berries which ripen to dark purplish-black in June (hence the sometimes common name of Juneberry) and resemble blueberries in size, color and taste. They are delicious when eaten raw, and the berries are often used in jams, jellies and pies. Finely-toothed, obovate leaves emerge with a bronzish-purple tinge in spring, mature to lustrous dark green in summer and turn red-orange in fall. This tree is primarily distinguished from the very similar native downy serviceberry (A. arborea) by its hairless foliage, purplish-tinged new growth and tastier (sweeter and juicier) berries.
Amelanchier plants are valued horticulturally, and their fruits are important to wildlife. This species is tolerant of a somewhat wide range of soils, but prefers moist, well-drained loams.
We will soon have have specimens available of Amelanchier x grandiflora 'Autumn Brilliance', that is a hybrid cross between A. laevis (Allegheny serviceberry) and A. arborea (downy serviceberry). As the name implies, it is extremely colorful during the fall. It is a small, deciduous, usually multi-trunked understory tree or tall shrub which typically matures to 15-20’ tall. Flowers bloom in April followed by edible fruits (3/8" diameter) in June (hence the sometimes used common name of Juneberry). Prices are size dependent, when plants are available, which should be late June.