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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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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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