Witherod is a small upright shrub growing 125-150 cm in height and width. Also called Northern Wild Raisin, it grows best in medium to wet, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Clusters of white flowers attract many different native bees in June, offering pollen and nectar. Once pollinated, the flowers will produce clusters of bright pink berries that will turn red, then blue and will ripen to black in August. The fruit is edible for humans and enjoyed by many birds. Prune soon after flowering to ensure blooms in the following year. It is the larval host plant for the Spring Azure butterfly and the Hummingbird Clearwing moth. The leaves emerge in bronze tones, turn green in summer and turn to beautiful orange, red and purple colours in fall.
Photo credit: F. D. Richards from Clinton, MI, CC BY-SA 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
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