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Symphoricarpos

Symphoricarpos

Symphoricarpos

S. albus var. laevigatus, native to the Pacific coast. It is a larger shrub, up to 2 m (6.6 ft) tall, and with slightly larger fruit. It is treated as a distinct species, Symphoricarpos rivularis, by some botanists.Symphoricarpos, commonly known as the snowberry, waxberry, or ghostberry, is a small genus of about 15 species of deciduous shrubs in the honeysuckle family, Caprifoliaceae. With the exception of the Chinese coralberry, S. sinensis, which is indigenous to western China, all species are native to North and Central America. The name of the genus is derived from the Ancient Greek words συμφορεá¿–ν (sumphoreîn), meaning "to bear together", and καρπÏŒς (karpós), meaning "fruit". It refers to the closely packed clusters of berries the species produces.

Symphoricarpos

The rounded, opposite leaves of common snowberry mark it as a member of the honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae). The oval white berries give this species its common name. Interestingly, the twigs are hollow. One variety (Symphoricarpos albus var. laevigatus) is cultivated for planting in the garden, but it can suffer from rusts and other pathogens. Birds and mammals consume the white berries and use the shrubs for cover and nesting sites.As we anticipate La Niña bringing us a snowy winter, let’s take a moment to appreciate a snowy plant, or rather a plant named for its snowy berries – common snowberry. Botanically known as Symphoricarpos albus, the plant is aptly named for its white clusters of fruit.The genus is a combination of “symphori” referring to the Greek verb “to bear together,” and “carpos” from the Greek word for “fruit.” The specific epithet “albus” is the Latin word for “white.”

This species of snowberry boasts ripe, white berries that develop in late summer and persist all winter, through the rain, cold temperatures, and even through, you guessed it, our [occasional] snow.Symphoricarpos is a genus of about 18 species, primarily from North America and some from China. It is popular in cultivation and frequently planted in hedges or for ground cover. Specific boundaries have often become obscure as a result of selection and hybridization. Hence, Symphoricarpos is a taxonomically difficult genus and most plants are hardly identifiable using traditional flora's. Hoffman (2012) proposed to group all taxa in three informal groups: a 'White Berry Group' (for all taxa related to S. albus), a 'Pink Berry Group' (for all taxa related to S. xdoorenbosii) and a 'Groundcover Group' (for all taxa related to S. xchenaultii). Nowadays, complex artificial hybrids with pinkish berries and smaller leaves are more frequently planted than Symphoricarpos albus. These will probably increasingly escape and become naturalized. (Source: alienplantsbelgium.myspecies.info)

 

 

 

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