Prunus virginiana, chokeberry



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Shrub or small tree to 8 m tall, the young stems finely puberlent, greenish at first, soon becoming glabrous and reddish, the older stems ashy-gray with a reddish-brown undertone; leaves petiolate, the petiole 1-2 (2.5) cm long, with a pair of distal reddish glands, these glands sometimes on the blade near the base, the stipules small, the blade (ob)ovate or elliptic, 4-9 (12) cm long, 1.5-4.5 (7.5) cm wide or usually smaller on the raceme-bearing branches, obtuse, rounded or subcordate basally, acute or acuminate apically, finely serrulate with ascending teeth, dark green above and pale green beneath, most of ours wholly glabrous or rarely with a few tufts of hairs in the axils of the lateral veins beneath, or in var. demissa pubescent, the midrib impresssed above, prominent beneath; raceme elongate, 5-14 (20) cm long, with numerous (more than 15) flowers, the pedicels 2.5-7 mm long, each subtended by a bract, the lower flowers often in the axils of the upper leaves; hypanthium 2-3 mm deep; sepals reflexed, broadly rounded or deltate, 0.6-1.3 (2) mm long, erose or usually fimbriate with reddish, glandular, clavate hairs; petals broadly ovate or suborbicular, 3-5 (6.5) mm long, white; stamens about 25, the filaments 2-5 mm long, the anthers 0.5-0.8 mm long; drupe 6-8 mm thick, becoming dark red or bluish-purple to nearly black; 2n = 16, 26, 32.

Cronquist, A., Holmgren, N.H., and Holmgren, P.K. (1997) "Intermountain Flora" pg. 147, vol. 3 part A, The New York Botanical Garden New York.