Kinnikinnick (Arctostaphylos uva ursi) SE

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Plant Description: Kinnikinnick, or Common Bearberry, is a slow growing, prostrate evergreen shrub that forms a thick vegetative mat. The dark green leaves, spoon shaped and thick with margins rolling under, contrast against the purplish red woody stems. In fall, the leaves change from their dark green to a reddish-green to purple. 

The nodding urn shaped whitish pink flowers are small and appear in clusters at the end of branches. The fruit is a spherical bright red drupe with glossy skin, which persist on the plant into early winter. 

  • Height: 2-8"
  • Width: 2-15 ft
  • Watering needs: Low
  • Sun needs: Sun to partial shade
  • Soil needs: Course and well-draining
  • Bloom Time: April-May
  • Ripening Time: Late summer
  • Portland Plant List (Backyard Habitat Certification): Yes

Landscape Use and Ecological Function: This plant is a Willamette Valley native and is found across much of North America on sand dunes, barren areas, coarse rocky slopes, and under partial shade of forest canopies up to 8000 ft. Good for erosion control on slopes.

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