Serviceberry (Amelanchier alnifolia) is a large shrub or small tree, growing 6-18′ tall and up to 10′ wide. Leaves are round to oval, 1-2 inches long, and pale green in color. Once it is several years old, serviceberry starts blooming with fragrant white flowers from mid-spring to early summer followed by small, dark blue, edible fruit. Leaves turn a delicate yellow in fall.
This attractive shrub is also great for wildlife. Birds and small mammals eat the tasty fruit. Pale swallowtail and Lorquin’s admiral butterflies lay their eggs on serviceberry, and in winter many species browse the twigs and bark.
Serviceberry is a common and widespread species, growing native from Alaska to California, and across Great Plains into eastern Canada. It grows in full sun to partial shade, and tolerates dry, moist, or wet soil. Shrubs in sunnier sites tend to have the most vibrant fall color.
- Light Requirements: Full Sun, Part Shade
- Water Requirements: Dry, Moist, Seasonally Wet
- Ease of Growing: Easy to grow
- Growth Rate: Moderate
- Spreads: No
- Wildlife Support: Pollinators, Pest-eating Insects, Birds or Mammals
- Fire-resistant: Yes
- Edible: Yes
- Mature Height: 15-30ft
- Mature Width:10-20ft