[NAFEX] Re: The serviceberry's fruit often overlooked

Richard Kruse richkrus at gvtel.com
Thu Jun 3 12:23:24 EDT 2004

Forgive me, but this is a subject I have researched so it will be long.

            The species Amelanchier is one that has been said to be as small
as twenty some to upwards of fifty.  Identifying the various ones is
complicated my be fact that it hybridizes naturally.  I once copped some
fruit from a A. Stolonifera plant at an Arboretum.  The plant had stalons so
there was a pretty good chance it was what it was labeled.  Well, the result
of the seed planting has no sign of staloning.

            It is further complicated the nursery industry in a lot of cases
has a "one plant fits all" policy.  I have purchase several Allegheny
Serviceberries that lack the bronze unfolding leaf that is one of the
identifying features of A. Laevis.  It is listed by Dirr as a Zone 4 to 8
plant but the one I have I found in Roseau County in Mn some 40 miles from
the Canadian border.

            When it comes to fruit production year after year you can't beat
A. alnifolia, the Saskatoon Serviceberry.  Smokey and Regent are two that I
have, along with Honeywood that I can make a judgment as to taste and yield.
I have tasted Pembina and have judged that it not desirable.  The sweetest
and best tasting berries that I have tasted are the ones native to the area
of zone 3 here in N. Mn (Del Stubbs country).  Also I bought a serviceberry
advertised as growing only 4 feet tall from a nursery in Indiana that is
nine feet tall and tastes very good.

            Virtually all of my berry production is from plants grown from
seed from berries I picked in Canada. The exception is 3 Regents.  The
Canadians report that the plants come 80 % true from seed.

Richard Kruse

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