Vaccinium myrtilloides

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Vaccinium myrtilloides
Vaccinium myrtilloides berries.jpg

Secure (NatureServe)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Ericales
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Vaccinium
Species: V. myrtilloides
Binomial name
Vaccinium myrtilloides
Michx. 1803
Synonyms[1]
  • Vaccinium angustifolium var. myrtilloides (Michx.) House

Vaccinium myrtilloides is a shrub with common names including common blueberry, velvetleaf huckleberry, velvetleaf blueberry, Canadian blueberry, and sourtop blueberry.[2] It is common in much of North America, reported from all 10 Canadian province plus Nunavut and Northwest Territories, as well as from the northeastern and Great Lakes states in the United States. It is also known to occur in Montana and Washington. [3]

Description[edit]

Vaccinium myrtilloides is a low spreading deciduous shrub growing up to 50 cm (20 inches) tall, often spreading to form small thickets. The leaves are bright green, paler underneath with velvety hairs. The flowers are white, bell-shaped, 5 mm (0.2 inches) long. The fruit is a small sweet bright blue to dark blue berry. Young stems have stiff dense bristly hairs. [3]

Vaccinium myrtilloides grows best in open coniferous woods with dry loose acidic soils; it is also found in forested bogs and rocky areas. It is fire-tolerant and is often abundant following forest fires or clear-cut logging. Vaccinium myrtilloides hybridizes in the wild with Vaccinium angustifolium - lowbush blueberry.

Characteristics[edit]

Vaccinium myrtilloides is also cultivated and grown commercially in Canada and Maine, mainly harvested from managed wild patches. Vaccinium myrtilloides is one of the sweetest blueberries known.

It is also an important food source for black bears, deer, small mammals, and birds.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]