[Serviceberries: The Genus Amelanchier West of the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and Washington]

Pacific Serviceberry

Amelanchier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia

Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelanchier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)
Pacific serviceberry as seen in bloom along the Illinois River to the southwest of Selma, OR.........April 5, 2009.

Characteristics:

Serviceberry is an attractive low-spreading shrub or erect, small tree from 1-7 meters high. The young branches and buds are reddish brown and smooth while the older twigs are gray. The leaves are alternate on short stalks off of the stems. They are bright green in color and oval to elliptic in shape, ranging from 2-4 cm long. The margins are entire on the lower half and toothed on the distal half (See photo at right.).

The flowers are plentiful, fragrant, and grouped in showy white clusters or racemes of 3-20 flowers. Individual flowers are 2-3 cm across with 5 thin, often twisted white petals and about 20 stamens. The fruits are globose, fleshy with several seeds, and initially red, later ripening to dark purple.


Importance:

The berries are edible and tasty. They are a good source of iron and copper. Native Americans ate the berries raw or dried them into loaves for later use in soups and stews, or mixed with meat and fat for travel food (pemmican?). Native Americans also used the wood for arrows, spears, and crosspieces for canoes. The juice of the berries was used as a dye. The berries are used today in jams, jellies, and wines. The leaves and stems are browsed by deer, elk, sheep and goats. Grouse eat the berries during the summer and the buds during the winter. Serviceberry is also useful as an ornamental plant.


Habitat:

Serviceberry may be found in open woods, canyons, and hillsides from sea level to subalpine habitats. It is especially fond of rocky soils.


Range:

Serviceberry may be found from southern Alaska south to California and east to Alberta. It is found southward at the east part of its range through the Dakotas, Nebraska, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona.


Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Underside of a leaf of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Flowers and leaves of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Pacific serviceberry as seen at Nob Hill Park in St. Helens, OR.........April 3, 2016.

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

What appears to be Pacific serviceberry as seen as low shrubs on rock outcrops above the east side of Upper Bigelow Lake, Siskiyou National Forest..........July 14, 2012.

Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Leaf of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Leaf of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

The upper 3 photos show close-ups of the petals, sepals and upper surface details of the pistil of Pacific serviceberry. The lower 2 photos show leaf details, with the upper leaf surface at left and lower leaf surface at right. Note the hairiness of both leaf surfaces, which might make this A. utahensis.

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Pacific serviceberry as seen in bloom along the Illinois River to the southwest of Selma, OR........April 5, 2009.

Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Flower of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Underside of a leaf of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Upper leaf surface of Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Close-up images of pacific serviceberry as seen at the Rough and Ready Botanical Wayside in southwestern Oregon.........April 29, 2012.

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Pacific serviceberry observed atop Mount Hebo, Siuslaw National Forest......June 2, 2021.

Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida) - Pacific Serviceberry: Amelachier alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia (Synonym: Amelanchier florida var. florida)

Close-up images of pacific serviceberry as seen at the Rough and Ready Botanical Wayside in southwestern Oregon.........April 22, 2021.

Paul Slichter