Plant DetailShow Menu

Allegheny Serviceberry Amelanchier laevis

Other plants called Allegheny Serviceberry:

Previously known as:

  • A. arborea ssp. laevis
  • A. arborea var. cordifolia
  • A. arborea var. laevis
  • A. laevis var. nitida
  • Amelanchier ×grandiflora
Phonetic Spelling
am-uh-LAN-kee-er LYE-viss
Description

Allegheny Serviceberry is a deciduous tree or shrub in the rose family native to Eastern North America and the mountains of NC. It typically grows 15 to 25 feet tall as a multi-trunked tree or in a shrub form.  In the wild, it may grow up to 40 feet tall.  In spring, 5-petaled, white flowers are borne on 4-inch racemes that are quite showy and are followed by purple edible berries that mature in June.

It prefers moist, acidic, well-drained loams and will tolerate a range of soil types but not drought. It flowers best in part sun to part shade but tolerates shade. It is medium to fast-growing but a fairly short-lived tree.

Allegheny Serviceberry can be used as a small shade tree, street tree, in a woodland setting or used as a shrub in borders and hedges. To use as a tree it must be pruned to the shape as it tends to want to grow shrubby.

It is distinguished from other varieties by the hairless foliage, purple-tinged new growth, and the tastier berries.

Insects, Diseases and Other Plant Problems:   Leaf miners, borers, aphids, and spider mites are insects that may affect the plant.  Diseases include leaf blight, fire blight, and powdery mildew. The fruit may rot in wet weather.

 

VIDEO Created by Elisabeth Meyer for "Edibles, Bulbs, and Houseplants" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.   

More information on Amelanchier.

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • Amelanchier lamarckii
    Rich bronze-red new growth
  • ‘Cumulus'
    Shorter tree
  • 'Lustre Allegheny'
    20' at maturity.
  • 'Snowcloud'
    Works will in limited spaces. Great street tree.
  • 'Snowflakes'
    Low growing variety.
  • 'Spring Flurry'
    Orange fall foliage. Good street tree.
Amelanchier lamarckii, ‘Cumulus', 'Lustre Allegheny', 'Snowcloud', 'Snowflakes', 'Spring Flurry'
Tags:
#bees#purple#red#white#deciduous#fall color#yellow#small tree#full sun#partial shade#bronze#white flowers#wildlife plant#purple leaves#native tree#tree#red leaves#yellow leaves#street tree#food source#salt spray tolerant#cpp#NC native#bronze leaves#deer resistant#magenta#magenta berries#native garden#larval host plant#food source summer#purple fruits#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#fruits#bird friendly#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#butterfly friendly#butterfly larvae#butterflies#pollinators#birds#audubon
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • Amelanchier lamarckii
    Rich bronze-red new growth
  • ‘Cumulus'
    Shorter tree
  • 'Lustre Allegheny'
    20' at maturity.
  • 'Snowcloud'
    Works will in limited spaces. Great street tree.
  • 'Snowflakes'
    Low growing variety.
  • 'Spring Flurry'
    Orange fall foliage. Good street tree.
Amelanchier lamarckii, ‘Cumulus', 'Lustre Allegheny', 'Snowcloud', 'Snowflakes', 'Spring Flurry'
Tags:
#bees#purple#red#white#deciduous#fall color#yellow#small tree#full sun#partial shade#bronze#white flowers#wildlife plant#purple leaves#native tree#tree#red leaves#yellow leaves#street tree#food source#salt spray tolerant#cpp#NC native#bronze leaves#deer resistant#magenta#magenta berries#native garden#larval host plant#food source summer#purple fruits#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#fruits#bird friendly#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#butterfly friendly#butterfly larvae#butterflies#pollinators#birds#audubon
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Amelanchier
    Species:
    laevis
    Family:
    Rosaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Used by native Americans to make pemmican- a high energy cake made with the dried fruits, meat and fat for traveling. The bark has been used in herbal medicine.
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern North America
    Distribution:
    USA: AL , CT , DC , DE , GA , IA , IL , IN , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , PA , RI , SC , TN , VA , VT , WI , WV Canada: NB , NL , NS , ON , PE , QC
    Fire Risk Rating:
    medium flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Host plant for Red-Spotted Purple and Viceroy butterflies. Butterflies and other insects nectar at the blooms. Fruits are eaten by songbirds, ruffed grouse, small mammals, and large mammals. Mildly resistant to deer. Bees are attracted to the flowers.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    Drought tolerant.
    Edibility:
    Fruit tastes similar to a blueberry and can be used raw or cooked.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 15 ft. 0 in. - 25 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 15 ft. 0 in. - 20 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Shrub
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Irregular
    Multi-stemmed
    Multi-trunked
    Vase
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Dappled Sunlight (Shade through upper canopy all day)
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12-24 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Showy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Pome
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Sweet berry-like pome that matures to purple. The berries resemble blueberries and are used in jams and jellies. The fruit attracts birds. Fruit displays from May to June.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    This plant has small, white flowers from March to April on 4 inch long racemes. Often blooms before ith leaves appear except in the northernmost range.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Obovate
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are oval and 2 to 4 inches long and 1-2 inches wide. Margins are serrated, tips abruptly pointed, the base is rounded. New growth emerges as bronze-purple, turns glossy green in summer, and clear yellow to red fall color. The minimal amount of hairs on stalks and leaves makes this variety slightly different than other Amelanchier varieties.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Gray
    Light Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Furrowed
    Smooth
    Bark Description:
    The bark is smooth and slate-gray with white, longitudinal stripes. On mature trees it splits and furrows becoming rough.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Buds:
    Scaly
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
    Stem Description:
    Twigs are slender and flexible, reddish-brown with fine hair. New growth is green. The buds are long and pointed, with scales that have reddish-yellow to reddish-green margins and usually have some hair
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Lawn
    Naturalized Area
    Pond
    Slope/Bank
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Edible Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Rain Garden
    Shade Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Border
    Flowering Tree
    Hedge
    Mass Planting
    Screen/Privacy
    Shade Tree
    Small groups
    Small Tree
    Specimen
    Street Tree
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Salt
    Urban Conditions