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Vaccinium ovatum is a North American species of flowering shrubs known by the common names evergreen huckleberry, winter huckleberry and California huckleberry.
Distribution and ecology
Vaccinium ovatum is a small to medium-sized evergreen shrub native to the Western Pacific Coast of the United States and coastal British Columbia. Typical flora associates are such plants as the western sword fern (Polystichum munitum), coastal woodfern (Dryopteris arguta), California snowberry (Symphoricarpos mollis), common snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus), and thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus). Often found sprouting from nurse logs and growing in conjunction with red huckleberry (Vaccinium parvifolium).
Vaccinium ovatum is a true huckleberry plant, growing well in shade or sun and thriving in acidic soils. Not needing much sun, the plant has a wide variety of forest homes; it is often seen sprouting out of old coast redwood stumps or dense brambles of other forest growths. The shiny, alternately arranged, egg-shaped leaves are 2 to 3 centimeters (0.8-1.2 inches) long and about a centimeter wide (0.4 inches) with finely serrated edges. During the summer the plant produces round, edible black berries up to a centimeter (0.4 inches) in diameter.
Vaccinium ovatum is grown as an ornamental plant for horticultural use by specialty wholesale, retail, and botanic garden native plant nurseries. The plant is successful in natural landscape and native plant palette style, and habitat gardens and public sustainable landscape and restoration projects that are similar to its habitat conditions.
- Biota of North America Program 2014 county distribution map
- Calflora taxon report, University of California, Vaccinium ovatum Pursh, California huckleberry, Huckleberry, evergreen huckleberry
- Turner Photographics, Vaccinium ovatum - Wildflowers of the Pacific Northwest photo, description, partial distribution map
- C. Michael Hogan. 2008. Coastal Woodfern (Dryopteris arguta), GlobalTwitcher, ed. N. Stromberg
- Jepson Manual treatment, University of California — Vaccinium ovatum
- Flora of North America, Vaccinium ovatum Pursh, 1813. California huckleberry
- Foster, Steven; Hobbs, Christopher (April 2002). A Field Guide to Western Medicinal Plants and Herbs. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. ISBN 039583807X.
- Jepson Horticultural Database for Vaccinium ovatum . 11.10.2010
- CNPLX: Vaccinium ovatum . accessed 11.10.2010
for additional reading
- Stephen Foster and Christopher Hobbs. 2002. Western Medicinal Plants and Herbs (pg. 287). Houghton Miller Company, New York, NY.
- Jepson Manual. 1993. Vaccinium ovatum, University of California Press, Berkeley, California