Allegheny Serviceberry

Botanical Name:
Amelanchier laevis

Family Name:
Rosaceae / Rose

The Allegheny Serviceberry is a beautiful flowering tree whose blooms give the first indication of spring. The berries provide a delicious treat to birds, small mammals, and humans. The tree grows well in partial sun and its small stature makes it an appealing choice for city streets with electrical lines.


Habitat and Range:
Native to the Midwest and northeastern United States this tree typically grows in wooded areas where it is not exposed to full sun. The tree is not drought resistant and may lose its leaves before fall when deprived of water.

The Allegheny Serviceberry produces drooping, white flower clusters in the spring that develop into edible purple-black berries. The simple oval leaves turn an outstanding orange-red in the fall. Visitors may enjoy the pleasant structure of the multi-stemmed trunk and the gray bark in the winter.

Wildlife Value:
The flowers provide early season nectar and pollen for bees and butterflies. Sweet purple berries attract squirrels and chipmunks as well as cardinals, woodpeckers, and many other birds.

Did you know?
• The serviceberry is believed to have gotten its name in 19th century New England as the early blooms indicated a spring thaw that allowed roads to become passable so rural residents could again attend religious services.
• The fruit of the serviceberry was an important food source for Native Americans and early colonists.

Benefits to Our Community (based on carbon dioxide sequestered, storm water runoff avoided, and air pollution removed each year):
Over the next 15 years, this tree will give back $330 worth of benefits to our community.