Alphabetical Plant Listing

Gaylussacia baccata (Black Huckleberry)

Black Huckleberry, Decachaena baccata


Gaylussacia baccata (Black Huckleberry) is a low-growing, freely branched, deciduous shrub with stiff and erect stems clad with small, oval, shiny leaves, up to 2 in. long (5 cm). In the fall, the delicate foliage turns orange and crimson. Urn-shaped red to pink flowers, arranged in one-sided racemes, appear in the axils of the leaves in late spring to mid summer. They attract bees, butterflies and other pollinators. The blossoms are followed by a profusion of small, edible, purplish-black berries - a delight for birds, wildlife and humans. They are deliciously spicy and sweet and can be eaten out of hand or used in pies or preserves. A few hours of sunlight each day makes for best growth and fall color. Black Huckleberry is a common huckleberry found throughout a wide area of eastern North America. It tends to colonize and often forms thickets. Use Black Huckleberry in wildlife gardens, shrub borders, and foundation plantings. The shallow spreading root system helps prevent erosion on slopes and rocky hillsides.

  • Grows up to 1-3 ft. tall (30-90 cm) and 4-5 ft. wide (120-150 cm).
  • Performs best in partial sun in sandy or rocky, mesic to dry, well-drained, acidic soils. Tolerates full sun but likely prefers diffuse lighting. Drought and dry soil tolerant.
  • Great for shrub borders, foundation plantings or as an informal hedge. Combines well with Rhododendrons and Azaleas.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • Propagate by seeds. Untreated seeds are slow to germinate.
  • Native to eastern North America.

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Requirements

Hardiness 4 – 7
Plant Type Shrubs
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 1' – 3' (30cm – 90cm)
Spread 4' – 5' (120cm – 150cm)
Spacing 48" – 60" (120cm – 150cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Wisconsin, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage

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M Huston (Shutterstock), Doug MacGrady (Flickr)

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 4 – 7
Plant Type Shrubs
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 1' – 3' (30cm – 90cm)
Spread 4' – 5' (120cm – 150cm)
Spacing 48" – 60" (120cm – 150cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Wisconsin, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage

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