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Padus virginiana

Prunus virginiana. Synonym: Padus virginiana. (Chokecherry) 
Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Foothills, montane. Shrublands, woodlands. Spring.
Echo Basin Road, June 7, 2004.

Chokecherry is found from coast to coast across the central and northern United States and southern Canada.  Chokecherry berries are an important wildlife food and humans have eaten their berries for millennia. 

Chokecherry trees, even young ones, produce a beautiful spring show of abundant white flowers followed by a multitude of tasty berries. Mature trees, such as those pictured, produce sufficient berries for many pies, quarts of jelly, and pounds of bear fat.

"Padus" the ancient Greek name for this plant. "Virginiana" is a common specific epithet given to honor the place the plant was first collected. (Other states, territories, or rivers are also the source of plant names: "Canadensis", "Missouriensis",  "Arizonica"....  The colony/state of "Virginia" derives its name from the "Virgin Queen", Queen Elizabeth the First of England.)

"Prunus" is the more widely accepted generic name for this plant and it was given by Linnaeus in 1753 from a plant collected in Virginia by John Clayton. 

Padus virginiana

Prunus virginiana. Synonym: Padus virginiana. (Chokecherry) 
Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Foothills, montane. Shrublands, woodlands. Spring.
Echo Basin Road, June 16, 2003 and Haviland Lake, June 17, 2009.

Chokecherry's abundance of flowers are showy and fragrant.

Padus virginiana

Padus virginiana

Prunus virginiana. Synonym: Padus virginiana. (Chokecherry) 
Rosaceae (Rose Family)

 

Foothills, montane. Shrublands, woodlands. Spring.
Big Canyon Trail, May 26, 2010 and West Mancos Trail, June 17, 2010.

Padus virginiana

Prunus virginiana. Synonym: Padus virginiana. (Chokecherry)
R
osaceae (Rose Family)

Foothills, montane. Shrublands, woodlands. Spring.
Benchmark Fire Tower, August 17, 2000.

Chokecherries are a vital wildlife food in the mesa and low mountain country of the Southwest with berries eaten by birds, bears, chipmunks, and human beings. Chokecherries were also very important in the diet of the Anasazi and other native people.

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color Key

Species present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Range map for Prunus virginiana

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