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Sorbus americana, photo courtesy of David Cavagnaro
Sorbus americana, photo courtesy of David Cavagnaro

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Sorbus americana

Mountain Ash
Deciduous, Shrubs, Trees, Decorative fruit or berries


These natives of mountainous areas are valued for showy flowers and showier fruit. Blossoms are grouped in broad, flat clusters that are scattered over the foliage canopy in spring; they develop into hanging clusters of small, berrylike fruit that colors up in late summer or early autumn. Most species have red or orange-red fruit, but white, pink, and golden forms are occasionally available. Birds feed on the fruit, but usually not until after leaves have fallen. Foliage is typically finely cut and somewhat fernlike, though some less widely planted species have undivided leaves.

Sorbus americana

Tree orshrub. From easternNorth America. To 10–30 ft.tall and wide. Dark green leaveswith paler undersides reach10 in. long, consist of 11 to17 leaflets; turn yellow in fall.Orange-red fruit. This species isvery hardy and tolerates dampsoil, but it is not the choicest ofmountain ashes. ‘Red Cascade’is an attractive variety with anoval crown and compact growthto 16 ft. tall and 8 ft. wide.

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