Amelanchier laevis (Allegheny Serviceberry)
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Amelanchier laevis, also called Allegheny serviceberry, is a small, deciduous, typically multi-trunked tree or large shrub which is native to thickets, open woods, and forest understories and edges in Eastern North America where it usually grows to 15-25' tall. Like other serviceberries, Amelanchier laevis produces showy, slightly fragrant, white flowers in clusters which appear in the spring before the plant's leaves emerge with a bronzish-purple tinge in spring, which mature to lustrous dark green in summer and red-orange in fall. Flowers are attractive to all sorts of pollinators.
Allegheny serviceberry fruits are small, blue to purple-black edible berries, commonly used in jams and pies, and are also highly valued by songbirds and small mammals. Somewhat sensitive to drought, but prefers moist, acidic, well-drained loamy soils, but will tolerate a range of soil types. Amelanchier laevis has wide tolerance of light, and can be used in the home garden in a variety of ways mimicking its natural habitat.
Amelanchier laevis is available in single-stem and multi-stem varieties. The single-stem selection is the perfect start to maintaining Amelanchier laevis as a small tree rather than a shrub, whereas multi-stem serviceberry is a great choice for shrub or hedge maintenance.