Black chokeberry is a dependable small to medium sized shrub with upright, mounded habit. Small clusters of white flowers in spring are followed by glossy black fruit. Dark green foliage turns reddish-purple in the fall.
This species is native to the Chicago region according to Swink and Wilhelm's Plants of the Chicago Region, with updates made according to current research.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
All common names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- Chicago area,
- North America
- Mixed border,
- Medium shrub (5-8 feet),
- Small shrub (3-5 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 3,
- Zone 4,
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7,
- Zone 8
- Acid soil,
- Wet soil
- Occasional drought,
- Wet sites,
- Occasional flooding,
- Road salt
Seasons of Interest:
- early winter,
- mid spring,
- late spring,
- early fall,
- mid fall,
- late fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
Tree & Plant Care
A 3 to 8 feet high and 3 to 6 feet wide shrub for low to wet locations.
Best in full sun to part shade; plant toward back of border because plants tend to sucker and be a bit leggy at the bottom.
Plants benefit from mulch to conserve moisture.
Prune after flowering in spring.
Disease, pests and problems
No serious disease or insect problems.
Prune out unwanted suckers to control size.
Native geographic location and habitat
Native the the northeastern United States and the upper Midwest.
Attracts birds & butterflies
Fruit is eaten by a number of bird species, usually in mid to late winter.
Bark color and texture
Bark is brown and relatively smooth, with obvious lenticels.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Alternate, simple leaves; 1 to 3 inches long
Dark green foliage turns a deep mahogany red in fall.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Small clusters of white flowers in mid-spring.
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Edible, purplish-black berry-like fruit (pomes).
Cultivars and their differences
This plant is a cultivar of a species that is native to the Chicago Region according to Swink and Wilhelm's Plants of the Chicago Region, with updates made according to current research. Cultivars are plants produced in cultivation by selective breeding or via vegetative propagation from wild plants identified to have desirable traits."