Salal

Salal (Gaultheria shallon)
Gaultheria shallon

Salal is a low-growing, leathery-leaved evergreen shrub that tolerates a wide variety of conditions. Its dark blue “berries” (actually swollen sepals) are edible raw and can be made into jams, preserves, and pies. Salal berries are mildly sweet, and are often used in combination with the more tart Oregon grape.

In the Willamette Valley, salal prefers full to partial shade. In coastal areas it can form deep, nearly impenetrable thickets, and easily tolerates full sun. It grows as far north as Baranof Island, Alaska.

Salal leaves are also harvested and sold to florists worldwide for use in floral arrangements.


  • Light Requirements: Part Shade, Full Shade
  • Water Requirements: Dry, Moist
  • Ease of Growing: Easy to grow
  • Growth Rate: Moderate
  • Spreads: Yes
  • Wildlife Support: Pollinators, Hummingbirds, Pest-eating Insects, Birds or Mammals
  • Edible: Yes
  • Mature Height: 1-5ft
  • Mature Width: 1-5ft