Alphabetical Plant Listing

Sorbus torminalis (Wild Service Tree)

Wild Service Tree, Checker Tree, Chequer Tree, Checkers, Chequers, Griping Tree, Sorb


A grand sight in almost every season, Sorbus torminalis (Wild Service Tree) is a spreading deciduous tree adorned with upright sweeping branches and a rounded canopy of broad, pinnately lobed, maple-like, bright glossy green leaves, 3-5 in. long (7-12 cm), that warm up to a rich, coppery red in the fall, before falling to the ground, revealing the brown and patterned bark. In late spring, a profusion of tiny white flowers held in loose inflorescences are produced. They are quickly followed by abundant clusters of small, brown, berrylike fruits, also known as Chequers, which ripen in the fall. The fruits are said to taste like dates and were given to children as sweets. They provide a welcomed feast for various types of weary, migrating birds and seldom last very long. Attractive in form, elegant in flower, colorful in fruit and foliage, Sorbus intermedia stars in almost every season of the year.

  • Grows up to 50-70 ft. tall (15-21 m) and 35-50 ft. wide (10-15 m).
  • A full sun to part shade lover, this tree is easily grown in moderately fertile, humus-rich, well-drained soils. Drought tolerant once established.
  • Propagate by seed, softwood cuttings or grafting.
  • No routine pruning necessary. Remove diseased, damaged, congested or crossing shoots.
  • Keep an eye out for aphids, blister mites, silver leaf and fireblight.
  • Native to Europe, Africa, Asia.

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Requirements

Hardiness 6 – 7
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Sorbus - Mountain Ash
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 50' – 70' (15m – 21m)
Spread 35' – 50' (10.5m – 15m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United Kingdom
Tolerance Drought
Attracts Birds
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow

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Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH, Shutterstock

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 6 – 7
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Sorbus - Mountain Ash
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 50' – 70' (15m – 21m)
Spread 35' – 50' (10.5m – 15m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United Kingdom
Tolerance Drought
Attracts Birds
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Sorbus - Mountain Ash

Guides with Sorbus - Mountain Ash

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