Overview

Comprehensive Description

Comments

Black Chokeberry is one of the spring-flowering shrubs of the Rose family that most people are unfamiliar with. It remains quite small in size and lacks thorns. Another native species, Aronia arbutifolia (Red Chokeberry), has pubescent leaves and red fruits. Sometimes these two species hybridize to produce Aronia X prunifolia (Purple Chokeberry), which has purple fruit and other characteristics that are intermediate between its two parents. Chokeberries are somewhat similar to Malus spp. (Crabapples), except that the latter produce larger flowers (1-2" across) in simple cymes. Both Chokeberries and Crabapples produce fruits containing several small seeds. Other shrubs and small trees of the Rose family produce fruits containing a single stone (a large seed with a hard covering). This includes the various Prunus spp. (Cherries, Plums). Return
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Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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Distribution

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Unknown/Undetermined

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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Ecology

Associations

Faunal Associations

The nectar and pollen of the flowers undoubtedly attract bees and other insects. Among the bees, Osmia spp. (Mason Bees) and Andrena spp. (Andrenid Bees) are common visitors of spring-blooming shrubs in the Rose family. The caterpillars of the butterfly Satyrium titus (Coral Hairstreak), the moth Catocala praeclara (Praeclara Underwing), and the moth Lomographa semiclarata (Bluish Spring Moth) feed on the foliage of Aronia spp. (Chokeberries). Some birds use Chokeberries as a food source, including the Ruffed Grouse (buds, fruit) and Cedar Waxwing (fruit). Because the mature fruit of Black Chokeberry is black and soon falls to the ground, it is especially likely to be eaten by various mammals, including the Black Bear, Red Fox, and Fox Squirrel. These birds and mammals help to disperse the small seeds in the fruit. Both the Cottontail Rabbit and White-Tailed Deer browse on the twigs and foliage to a limited extent.
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Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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Flower-Visiting Insects of Black Chokeberry in Illinois

Aronia melanocarpa (Black Chokeberry)
(insect activity is unspecified, but in general bees suck nectar or collect pollen, and flies suck nectar or feed on pollen; one observation is from Krombein et al., otherwise observations are from Small)

Bees (long-tongued)
Apidae (Bombini): Bombus perplexus (Sm), Bombus sandersoni (Sm), Bombus ternarius (Sm)

Bees (short-tongued)
Halictidae (Halictinae): Lasioglossum pilosus pilosus fq (Sm); Colletidae (Colletinae): Colletes inaequalis (Sm); Andrenidae (Andreninae): Andrena alleghaniensis (Sm), Andrena forbesii (Kr), Andrena regularis (Sm), Andrena vicina (Sm)

Flies
Syrphidae: Eristalis dimidiatus (Sm), Helophilus fasciatus (Sm), Helophilus latifrons (Sm), Melanostoma sp. (Sm), Parhelophilus laetus (Sm), Sphaerophoria sp. fq (Sm), Syritta pipiens fq (Sm), Syrphus torvus fq (Sm)

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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Cultivation

The preference is light shade to full sun, moist to dry conditions, and a sandy acid soil. Some populations of this shrub occur in areas with considerable moisture, while other populations can be found at surprisingly dry sites. This can affect the adaptability of individual plants. Range & Habitat
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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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