Amelanchier canadensis var. obovalis

Eastern shadbush

Description Shrubs. Stems 1–40, 0.2–2 m, suckering and forming loosely scattered to sometimes dense clumps; twigs glabrous at flowering. Leaves conduplicate in bud; not much expanded or unfolded, pale green, and abaxially densely white- or faintly yellow-hairy by flowering; petioles 9–16 mm; blades pale green abaxially, elliptic or oval to oblong or obovate, 2–5 x 1–3 cm, firm, bases subcordate to cuneate, margins often serrate to or almost to base with 6–9 teeth per cm or proximal 1/3 entire, lateral veins 7–9 pairs, anastomosing and becoming indistinct near margins, apices acute or obtuse and mucronulate, abaxial surfaces perhaps with some remnants of hairs. Inflorescences 4–10-flowered, erect, compact, 1–3.7 cm, only proximalmost pedicel subtended by leaf. Pedicels hairy , proximalmost 0.6–1.3 cm. Flowers: hypanthia campanulate, 2–4 mm diam.; sepals ascending or spreading after flowering, 2–4 mm, adaxially hairy ; petals white, elliptic, 5.9–7.7 x 2.6–3.6 mm, not andropetalous; stamens 20; styles 5; ovary summitrounded, glabrous. Pomes purplish black, 6–8 mm diam., sweet. 2n = 34, 51.

Flowering Mar–May; fruiting May–Jun.

Pinelands, roadsides, dry openings in woods, generally in sandy soil; 0–200 m

Ala., Del., Ga., Md., N.J., N.C., Pa., S.C., Va.

(see Systematics page for references cited)
C. T. Frye (2006) found morphologic evidence for introgression between A. canadensis var. canadensis and A. canadensis var. obovalis and that may have been facilitated by land clearing and other anthropogenic disturbances. Characters such as plant height and extent of lateral spread that have been used in major couplets of keys are variable and may largely depend on site disturbance history, e.g., mowing, burning.

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