|Aronia arbutifolia (Red Chokeberry) |
|Cornus sericea (Red-Osier Dogwood)|
|Myrica pennsylvanica (Northern Bayberry)|
|Ilex verticillata (Common Winterberry)|
Ilex verticillata (Common Winterberry) is a native holly, complete with the glossy dark green leaves that we all love. It's deciduous, meaning that it will lose it's leaves in the fall, but the red berry-like drupes persist in winter until the birds eat them up. The straight species can grow to 10 feet, but many smaller cultivars are available. This beauty will attract over 20 species of birds. Does well in full sun or partial shade, but produces more fruit in more sun and moist soil.
|Symphoricarpos albus (Common Snowberry) |
A low-growing option (3-4 feet) for closer to the front of the border is either Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (Coralberry/Indiancurrant) or Symphoricarpos albus (Common Snowberry). While S. orbiculatus has a purplish berry, and S. albus has a very interesting white berry-like drupe, they both attract lots of birds. This plant is unique because it does well in shade.
With all this focus on fruits, it's important to note that birds will choose an insect to eat over a berry or seed anytime, so it's important to select native plants that will attract insects as well as provide tasty fruits, which all of the above will.
I don't know how I will decide what to plant. Do you have any of these plants? What are your experiences?
For more information, visit Carole Seville Brown's post on Best Berries for Birds in the Wildlife Garden.