Evergreen Huckleberry (Vaccinium ovatum)
With beautiful foliage and delicious fruit, the evergreen huckleberry makes a lovely addition to most any garden. Glossy evergreen leaves, bright pink flowers and blue-black berries make the evergreen huckleberry visually appealing and delicious to gardeners and pollinators alike, attracting birds and butterflies. These shrubs can grow 2 to 9 feet tall and be pruned to preferred shaping. Evergreen huckleberry plants like to grow in edges and clearings. They do best in partially shaded conditions though can tolerate full sun to full shade and require excessive drainage and acidic soils to become established.
Did we mention these huckleberries are delicious? Indigenous people of the Pacific Northwest have enjoyed and used evergreen huckleberries with their late-season ripening and harvest. The berries ripen in late summer through fall, August through November, are sweet in flavor, and may be used in cooking or made into jam. Many herbalists also use the leaves for tea to stabilize blood sugar levels.
Natalie Quist, AmeriCorps Projects Coordinator, Community Engagement