=Habitat and Range.=--In varying soils; along river banks, on dry

plains, in woods, common along walls, often thickets.

From Newfoundland across the continent, as far north on the

Mackenzie river as 62 deg..

Common throughout New England; at an altitude of 4500 feet upon Mt.


South to Georgia; west to Minnesota and Texas.

.=--Usually a shrub a few feet high, but occasionally a tree 15-25

feet in height, with a trunk diameter of 5-6 inches; head, in open

places, spreading, somewhat symmetrical, with dull foliage, but very

attractive in flower and fruit, the latter variable in color and


=Bark.=--Trunk and branches dull gray, darker on older trees, rough with

raised buff-orange spots; branchlets dull grayish or reddish brown;

season's shoots lighter, minutely dotted. Bitter to the taste.

=Winter Buds and Leaves.=--Buds 1-1-1/4 inches long, conical,

sharp-pointed, brown, slightly divergent from the stem.

Leaves 2-5 inches long and two-thirds as wide, dull green on the upper

side, lighter beneath, obovate or oblong, thin, finely, sharply, and

often doubly serrate; apex abruptly pointed; base roundish, obtuse or

slightly heart-shaped; leafstalk round, grooved, with two or more glands

near base of leaf; stipules long, narrow, ciliate, falling when the

leaves expand.

=Inflorescence.=--Appearing in May, a week earlier than P. serotina,

terminating lateral, leafy shoots of the season in numerous handsome,

erect or spreading racemes, 2-4 inches long; flowers short-stemmed,

about 1/3 inch across; petals white, roundish; edge often eroded; calyx

5-cleft with thin reflexed lobes, soon falling; stamens numerous; pistil

1; style 1.

=Fruit.=--In drooping racemes; varying from yellow to nearly black,

commonly bright red, edible, but more or less astringent; stem somewhat

persistent after the cherry falls.

=Horticultural Value.=--Hardy throughout New England; grows in almost

any soil, but prefers a deep, rich, moist loam. Vigorous young trees are

attractive, but in New England they soon begin to show dead branches,

and are so seriously affected by insects and fungous diseases that it is

not wise to use them in ornamental plantations, or to permit them to

remain on the roadside.

1. Winter buds.

2. Flowering branch.

3. Flower with part of perianth and stamens removed.

4. A petal.

5. Fruiting branch.

=Prunus serotina, Ehrh.=