Aronia melanocarpa – Black Chokeberry
(= A. nigra; Photinia melanocarpa, Photinia nigra) (eastern North America)
Habit: Small shrub with many shoots but few twigs, 0.5-2 m tall, up to 2 m wide; broad bushes like thickets when old; slow-growing, 15-30 cm a year.
Flowers: Short, white panicles, after leaves shoot; pungent smell.
Fruits: Round, like berries in clusters, red when unripe in September, black when fully ripe, persistent into November, edible, sweetish taste.
Leaves: Elliptical or oval, crimson-red when shooting, then dark green; green underneath; carmine or orange in October.
Roots: Shallow roots with a fine root system that is not sensitive, forms many runners; tolerates floods and soil compaction.
Demands: Sun to semi-shade; tolerant of heat, warm to cool, frost hardy, medium to extremely high humidity, good for urban areas, wind resistant.
Soil: Moderately dry or damp, tolerates short floods; acidic to slightly alkaline; on any soil; resistant to salt.
Our tip: Develops its best fruits in full sunlight.
Hardiness: Zone 5b