Vaccinium ovalifolium

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Vaccinium ovalifolium
Vaccinium ovalifolium 9618.JPG
Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest
Conservation status

Secure (NatureServe)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Ericales
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Vaccinium
Species: V. ovalifolium
Binomial name
Vaccinium ovalifolium
Sm.[1]
Varieties
  • V. o. var. alpinum (Tatew.) T.Yamaz.
  • V. o. var. ovalifolium (autonym)
  • V. o. var. sachalinense T.Yamaz.
List source :[2][3][4][5]
Synonyms[2][3][4]
  • V. alaskaense Howell
  • V. axillare Nakai
  • V. chamissonis Bong.
  • V. c. var. alpinum Tatew.
     [=V. o. var. alpinum]
  • V. o. var. coriaceum Boiss.
     [=V. o. var. ovalifolium]

Vaccinium ovalifolium (commonly known as Alaska blueberry, early blueberry, oval-leaf bilberry, oval-leaf blueberry, and oval-leaf huckleberry)[2] is a plant in the heath family having three varieties, all of which grow in northerly regions, including the subarctic.[2]

Older bark is greyish, but twigs are brown, yellow or reddish.

Growth[edit]

It is a spreading shrub which may grow to 5 feet (1.5 m) tall. It has pink 14 in (0.64 cm) urn-shaped flowers.[6]

Distribution[edit]

The original variety (i.e. the automatically named Vaccinium ovalifolium var[iety] ovalifolium) is found on both the eastern and western sides of the Pacific Ocean; in North America, it is distributed in Canada (in Alberta, British Columbia, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, southern Ontario, south central Quebec, and southern Yukon Territory); and the U.S. (in southern Alaska, Idaho, northern Michigan, Oregon, western South Dakota, and Washington); across the Pacific to Asia and Eurasia, it is distributed in Russia (in Kamchatka, the southern Kuril Islands, Primorsky Krai, and Sakhalin); and in Japan (in Hokkaido, and central and northern Honshu).[2]

The two other varieties are confined to Japan and Russia:
  • V. o. var. sachalinense is only found in Sakhalin in Russia, and Hokkaido in Japan.[5]
  • V. o. var. alpinum is distributed only within the Daisetsu and Hidaka Mountains of Hokkaido.[3]

Uses[edit]

Vaccinium ovalifolium is used by in jams and jellies and for making liqueur. Blueberry herbal tea can be made from the leaves, or from the juice of the blueberries themselves.[6]

Vaccinium ovalifolium has been used in Russia in the making of dyes, including the use of its tannin.[2]

In the winter, Vaccinium ovalifolium is an important food source for grazing deer, goats, and elk, and in the summer the nectar feeds hummingbirds.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vaccinium ovalifolium was originally collected for classification from Alaska by botanist Archibald Menzies between 1787–1788; and later described and published by botanist James Edward Smith in The Cyclopaedia; or, Universal Dictionary of Arts, Sciences and Literature (by Abraham Rees), London. 36: Vaccinium #2. 1817. "Name - Vaccinium ovalifolium Sm.". Tropicos. Saint Louis, Missouri: Missouri Botanical Garden. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f GRIN (October 19, 2009). "Vaccinium ovalifolium information from NPGS/GRIN". Taxonomy for Plants. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland: USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Journal of Japanese Botany 62:128. 1987. GRIN (October 19, 2009). "Vaccinium ovalifolium var. alpinum information from NPGS/GRIN". Taxonomy for Plants. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland: USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b GRIN (October 19, 2009). "Vaccinium ovalifolium var. ovalifolium information from NPGS/GRIN". Taxonomy for Plants. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland: USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Journal of Japanese Botany 62:128. 1987. GRIN (October 19, 2009). "'Vaccinium ovalifolium var. sachalinense information from NPGS/GRIN". Taxonomy for Plants. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland: USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c Ewing, Susan (1996). The Great Alaska Nature Factbook. Portland, Oregon: Alaska Northwest Books. ISBN 0-88240-454-7. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Vaccinium ovalifolium.