Brief Summary

    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi: Brief Summary
    provided by wikipedia

     src= Arctostaphylos uva-ursi flowers  src= Arcostaphylos uva-ursi flowers in pink  src= Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. uva-ursi fruit  src= Arctostaphylos uva ursi from Koehler's 'Medicinal-Plants' (1887)

    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is a plant species of the genus Arctostaphylos (manzanita). Its common names include kinnikinnick and pinemat manzanita, and it is one of several related species referred to as bearberry.

    Its specific name uva-ursi means "grape of the bear" in Latin (ūva ursī), just like what the generic epithet Arctostaphylos means in Greek ("bear-grape").

Comprehensive Description

    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi
    provided by wikipedia

    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi flowers
    Arcostaphylos uva-ursi flowers in pink
    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. uva-ursi fruit
    Arctostaphylos uva ursi from Koehler's 'Medicinal-Plants' (1887)

    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is a plant species of the genus Arctostaphylos (manzanita). Its common names include kinnikinnick and pinemat manzanita, and it is one of several related species referred to as bearberry.[2]

    Its specific name uva-ursi means "grape of the bear" in Latin (ūva ursī), just like what the generic epithet Arctostaphylos means in Greek ("bear-grape").[3]


    The distribution of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is circumpolar, and it is widespread in northern latitudes, but confined to high altitudes further south:

    In some areas, the plant is endangered or has been extirpated from its native range. In other areas, such as the Cascade Range, it is abundant.


    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is a small procumbent woody groundcover shrub 5–30 cm (2–12 in) high. The leaves are evergreen, remaining green for 1–3 years before falling. The fruit is a red berry.

    The leaves are shiny, small, and feel thick and stiff. They are alternately arranged on the stems. Undersides of leaves are lighter green than on the tops. New stems can be red if the plant is in full sun, but are green in shadier areas. Older stems are brown. In spring, they have white or pink flowers.

    Pure stands of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi can be extremely dense, with heights rarely taller than 6 inches. Erect branching twigs emerge from long flexible prostrate stems, which are produced by single roots. The trailing stems will layer, sending out small roots periodically. The finely textured velvety branches are initially white to pale green, becoming smooth and red-brown with maturity. The small solitary three-scaled buds are dark brown.

    The simple leaves of this broadleaf evergreen are alternately arranged on branches. Each leaf is held by a twisted leaf stalk, vertically. The leathery dark green leaves are an inch long and have rounded tips tapering back to the base. In fall, the leaves begin changing from a dark green to a reddish-green to purple.

    Terminal clusters of small urn-shaped flowers bloom from May to June. The perfect flowers are white to pink, and bear round, fleshy or mealy, bright red to pink fruits called drupes. This smooth, glossy skinned fruit will range from 14 to 12 inch (6 to 13 mm) in diameter. The fruit will persist on the plant into early winter. Each drupe contains 1 to 5 hard seeds, which need to be scarified and stratified prior to germination to reduce the seed coat and break embryo dormancy. There is an average of 40,900 cleaned seeds per pound.[4]


    There are at least five reported subspecies:

    • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. uva-ursi. Common bearberry; circumpolar arctic and subarctic, and in mountains further south.
    • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. adenotricha. Central high Sierra Nevada.
    • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. coactilis. North coastal California, central coast California, San Francisco Bay Area.
    • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. cratericola (J. D. Smith) P. V. Wells. Guatemala bearberry, endemic to Guatemala at very high altitudes (3000–4000 m).
    • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi subsp. longifoliosa. Various reports from Canada, U.S.A.[5] May be the same as adenotricha or coactilis.

    Sources do not agree on the list of subspecies, so some of these may be identical, or may be separate species rather than subspecies. See bearberry and manzanita. For a list of reported North American subspecies and varietals, see USDA Plants Profile in "External links" below. For a complete list of related plants see Arctostaphylos.

    (Further research needed to clarify botanical classification.)

    Chemistry and traditional medicine

    Arctostaphylos uva-ursi leaves contain the glycoside arbutin which metabolizes to form hydroquinone, a potential liver toxin.[6] Although bearberry extracts have been used in traditional medicine in belief the treatment alleviates urinary tract infections,[6] there is no high-quality evidence from clinical research that such treatment is effective or safe as of 2018.


    Historically, it was used by the Blackfeet Nation as food.[7]


    Bearberry is the main component in many traditional North American Native smoking mixes,[8] known collectively as "kinnikinnick" (Algonquin for a mixture). Bearberry is used especially among western First Nations, often including other herbs and sometimes tobacco.[citation needed]


    There are several cultivars that are propagated for use as ornamental plants. It is an attractive evergreen plant in gardens, and is useful for controlling erosion. It is tolerant of sun and dry soils and is thus common groundcover in urban areas.[citation needed]


    1. ^ "Arctostaphylos uva-ursi". NatureServe Explorer. NatureServe. Retrieved 2018-07-18..mw-parser-output cite.citation{font-style:inherit}.mw-parser-output q{quotes:"""""'"'"}.mw-parser-output code.cs1-code{color:inherit;background:inherit;border:inherit;padding:inherit}.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-free a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/65/Lock-green.svg/9px-Lock-green.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-limited a,.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-registration a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d6/Lock-gray-alt-2.svg/9px-Lock-gray-alt-2.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-subscription a{background:url("//upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/aa/Lock-red-alt-2.svg/9px-Lock-red-alt-2.svg.png")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration{color:#555}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription span,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration span{border-bottom:1px dotted;cursor:help}.mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{display:none;font-size:100%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error{font-size:100%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration,.mw-parser-output .cs1-format{font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-left,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-left{padding-left:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-right,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-right{padding-right:0.2em}
    2. ^ Casebeer, M. (2004). Discover California Shrubs. Sonora, California: Hooker Press. ISBN 0-9665463-1-8.
    3. ^ Wells, Philip V. (2000). The Manzanitas of California. Lawrence, KS: University of Kansas. p. 13. ISBN 978-0-933994-22-5. The name Arctostaphylos is from Greek: arctos = bear, staphylos = bunch of grapes or berries; hence bearberry, pertaining redundantly to A. uva-ursi (Latin: uva = berry, ursi = of the bear).
    4. ^ "Plant Fact Sheet: Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi)" (PDF). USDA NRCS Northeast Plant Materials Program. 31 January 2002.
    5. ^ Elven, Reidar (ed.). Pan-arctic Flora.
    6. ^ a b De Arriba, S. G; Naser, B; Nolte, K. U (2013). "Risk assessment of free hydroquinone derived from Arctostaphylos Uva-ursi folium herbal preparations". International Journal of Toxicology. 32 (6): 442–53. doi:10.1177/1091581813507721. PMID 24296864.
    7. ^ Hellson, John C. (1974). Ethnobotany of the Blackfoot Indians. Ottawa: National Museums of Canada. p. 101.
    8. ^ Moerman, Daniel E. "Arctostaphylos uva-ursi". Native American ethnobotany. pp. 87–88. ISBN 0-88192-453-9.


    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    Kinnikinnick is a widespread, circumpolar species [111].  In North America,
    it grows from the northern half of California north to Alaska and across
    Canada and the northern United States to New England and Newfoundland.
    Its range extends south in the Rocky Mountains to New Mexico.  In
    eastern North America, it extends south along the Atlantic Coast to New
    Jersey and in the Appalachian Mountains to Virginia.  Rare, disjunct
    populations occur in Georgia [59,117,152].

    Most infrataxa occur in the Rocky Mountains and are widespread.
    Distribution of the forms is as follows:

        Forma adenotricha is common in the Rocky Mountains but absent in the
    Appalachian Mountain region and both Coasts.  A closely related taxa is
    found in the Sierra Nevada [117,149]. 
        Forma coactilis may not be present in Alaska; it is most abundant
    on both Coasts.  It is found farther south along the Pacific Coast and
    in the Appalachian Mountains than the other forms [117,149].  It is the
    primary form in Ohio and New England [15,125]. 
        Forma longipilosa is absent from the Appalachian Mountains and very
    rare on both Coasts [117,149]. 
        Forma stipitata grows only in the Rocky Mountains and far West
        Forma uva-ursi extends the farthest north in the Arctic and is
    circumboreal through Eurasia [117,149]. 
    Occurrence in North America
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
         AK  CA  CO  CT  GA  ID  IL  ME  MA  MI
         MN  MT  NV  NH  NJ  NM  ND  OH  OR  PA
         SD  UT  VT  VA  WA  WI  WY  AB  BC  LB
         MB  NB  NF  NT  NS  ON  PE  PQ  SK  YT
    Regional Distribution in the Western United States
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info on this topic.

    This species can be found in the following regions of the western United States (according to the Bureau of Land Management classification of Physiographic Regions of the western United States):

        1  Northern Pacific Border
        2  Cascade Mountains
        4  Sierra Mountains
        5  Columbia Plateau
        6  Upper Basin and Range
        8  Northern Rocky Mountains
        9  Middle Rocky Mountains
       10  Wyoming Basin
       11  Southern Rocky Mountains
       12  Colorado Plateau
       13  Rocky Mountain Piedmont
       15  Black Hills Uplift
       16  Upper Missouri Basin and Broken Lands


    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the terms: drupe, shrub

    Kinnikinnick is a prostrate, evergreen shrub that produces extensive
    trailing stems [92].  The bark is thin and exfoliates in largish flakes
    [142].  The leathery, dark green leaves are about 0.5 to 1 inch
    (1.27-2.54 cm) long.  The flowers are borne in terminal racemes [59] and
    are followed by bright red berrylike drupes, 0.25 to 0.4 inch (6-10 mm)
    broad. Each drupe contains five (sometimes four) single-seeded nutlets

    In western Montana, kinnikinnick roots were found to extend to a depth of
    36 inches (91 cm) on one site and 72 inches (183 cm) on a drier site
    with the same soil type [100].  In two jack pine stands in central
    Alberta, kinnikinnick roots extended from 43.3 to 53.1 inches deep (110-135
    cm) [135].

    The forms (sometimes classed as varieties) of kinnikinnick are primarily
    distinguished by the types of pubescence.  These have been described in
    detail [15,117,142].


    Habitat characteristics
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the terms: fern, forest, organic soils, peat, taiga

    Habitat:  Kinnikinnick is most often a dominant understory species in open
    pine forests under jack pine (Pinus banksiana), lodgepole pine (P.
    contorta), limber pine (P. flexilis), ponderosa pine (P. ponderosa) or
    pitch pine (P. rigida) [47,96,113,138,148].  It is also found in the
    understories of Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), subalpine fir
    (Abies lasiocarpa), white spruce (Picea glauca), black spruce (P.
    mariana), paper birch (Betula papyrifera), aspen, and some eastern
    deciduous forests [6,30,96,134].  In the Pacific Northwest and Rocky
    Mountains, it grows on steep, sunny, dry slopes [41,131].  In the
    southern boreal forests of Saskatchewan and Manitoba, kinnikinnick is
    characteristic of dry and very dry forests [113].  It is common in
    heathland communities but grows in a variety of boreal forest sites,
    including eroded banks and peat bogs.  It also grows in sand-dune areas
    of subboreal regions [111].  Kinnikinnick is fairly abundant in the alpine
    zone of the Northwest and northern Rocky Mountains and may be dominant
    on stable, well drained, south-facing sites [10,27,31,32,33].  It grows
    under Oregon white oak (Quercus garryana) in Washington woodlands [42].
    Kinnikinnick is conspicuous in the Badlands of eastern Alberta [96].  In
    the foothills of the northern Great Plains, it grows in the rough fescue
    (Festuca scabrella) prairie [21,80].  In the Alaskan taiga, kinnikinnick
    occupies warmer sites [140].

    In Michigan and Wisconsin, kinnikinnick is found on dry sand plains, and in
    Wisconsin it grows in bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum)-grasslands
    [18,25].  In Ohio it grows on the beaches and dunes along Lake Erie
    [15].  In Ontario, it frequently grows on the shores of lakes and rivers
    and in semiopen coniferous woods [127].  In New England it grows in dry
    sandy open woods [125].  Kinnikinnick is one of the most abundant low
    understory species in the fire-prone, pygmy pine forests of the New
    Jersey Pine Barrens [91].

    Habitat variation by form:  Collections of North American kinnikinnick
    plants exhibit form differences between sites.  In the Rocky Mountains
    these ecological differences between forms are less pronounced
    [116,117].  Forma coactilis grows best on the driest sites and is
    generally more common on acidic and drier substrates.  It is the only
    form found along the Coasts (pH of most sites less than 6.6) and on the
    relatively moist substrates of the Appalachian Mountains (pH of most
    sites 3.7-5.5).  Forma coactilis grows most frequently in full sunlight
    and is relatively uncommon on shaded sites [116,117].  Forma adenotricha
    is most common on basic substrates and seldom occurs on very acidic
    soils.  It seems to grow better on relatively moist sites.  In the Great
    Lakes area, it is the most shade-tolerant form [116,117].  Forma
    stipitata is more frequent on relatively basic sites; forma longpilosa
    grows well on acidic soils.  Both grow well on sites with intermediate
    moisture status.  Forma stipitata is most common on open sites in the
    Rocky Mountains; forma longipilosa grows in intermediate light
    conditions [116,117].

    Soils:  Kinnikinnick grows on a wide range of soil textures, although it is
    commonly found on well-drained soils that have relatively low amounts of
    clay and silt [8,76,142,147,148].  It frequently occurs on sandy soils,
    shallow soils, soils on rock outcrops, and rapidly drained
    coarse-skeletal soils [70,127].  Along both Coasts and in conifer
    forests, kinnikinnick occurs on dry, acidic substrates [117].  In the
    Appalachian Mountains, it usually grows on moist, acidic soils.  The
    sandy to rocky soils on which kinnikinnick grows in the Great Lakes region
    are neutral to basic [117].  In Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, Utah,
    and Wyoming, kinnikinnick growth is fair to good on acidic soils; poor to
    fair on organic soils and poor on saline, sodic and sodic-saline soils.
    Optimum soil depth in this area is 10 to 20 inches (25.4-50.8 cm) [30].

    In the subalpine zone of western Montana, kinnikinnick grows on soils
    derived from granite and quartzite parent materials but not on soils
    developed on limestone [48].  However, it grows on soils formed from
    calcareous parent materials in the alpine zone [10].  It is found on
    basaltic lava flows, mudflow deposits, serpentine outcrops, and coarse
    glacial outwash in the Pacific Northwest [42].

    Kinnikinnick is common on dry, nutrient-poor soils [8,76,148].  Information
    relating kinnikinnick growth habits to specific soil nutrient levels is
    available for British Columbia [147].  Results of one study indicate
    that leaves are retained longer on plants growing on a sandy,
    nutrient-poor substrate than on plants growing on a site with better
    nutrient availability [111].

    Elevation:  Elevational ranges in some western regions are

                         Minimum                   Maximum
                       feet      meters         feet      meters

    Alberta             500       150            2000      610
    Colorado           6000      1829           11700     3566
    Montana            2900       884            7700     2347
    New Mexico         5000      1524           10000     3048
    Utah               7021      2140           11516     3510
    Wyoming            4000      1219            9700     2957
    Habitat: Cover Types
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info on this topic.

    This species is known to occur in association with the following cover types (as classified by the Society of American Foresters):

         1  Jack pine
        12  Black spruce
        15  Red pine
        18  Paper birch
        45  Pitch pine
       107  White spruce
       202  White spruce - paper birch
       206  Engelmann spruce - subalpine fir
       208  Whitebark pine
       210  Interior Douglas-fir
       211  White fir
       212  Western larch
       213  Grand fir
       215  Western white pine
       216  Blue spruce
       217  Aspen
       218  Lodgepole pine
       219  Limber pine
       229  Pacific Douglas-fir
       237  Interior ponderosa pine
       251  White spruce - aspen
    Habitat: Ecosystem
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info on this topic.

    This species is known to occur in the following ecosystem types (as named by the U.S. Forest Service in their Forest and Range Ecosystem [FRES] Type classification):

    More info for the term: shrub

       FRES10  White - red - jack pine
       FRES11  Spruce - fir
       FRES13  Loblolly - shortleaf pine
       FRES19  Aspen - birch
       FRES20  Douglas-fir
       FRES21  Ponderosa pine
       FRES22  Western white pine
       FRES23  Fir - spruce
       FRES25  Larch
       FRES26  Lodgepole pine
       FRES28  Western hardwoods
       FRES29  Sagebrush
       FRES34  Chaparral - mountain shrub
       FRES36  Mountain grasslands
       FRES38  Plains grasslands
       FRES44  Alpine
    Habitat: Plant Associations
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info on this topic.

    This species is known to occur in association with the following plant community types (as classified by Küchler 1964):

    More info for the term: forest

       K005  Mixed conifer forest
       K011  Western ponderosa forest
       K012  Douglas-fir forest
       K013  Cedar - hemlock - pine forest
       K014  Grand fir - Douglas-fir forest
       K015  Western spruce - fir forest
       K016  Eastern ponderosa forest
       K017  Black Hills pine forest
       K018  Pine - Douglas-fir forest
       K019  Arizona pine forest
       K020  Spruce - fir - Douglas-fir forest
       K021  Southwestern spruce - fir forest
       K022  Great Basin pine forest
       K026  Oregon oakwoods
       K037  Mountain mahogany - oak scrub
       K050  Fescue - wheatgrass
       K052  Alpine meadows and barren
       K056  Wheatgrass - needlegrass shrubsteppe
       K063  Foothills prairie
       K064  Grama - needlegrass - wheatgrass
       K066  Wheatgrass - needlegrass
       K067  Wheatgrass - bluestem - needlegrass
       K081  Oak savanna
       K093  Great Lakes spruce - fir forest
       K095  Great Lakes pine forest
       K110  Northeastern oak - pine forest
    Key Plant Community Associations
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the terms: association, climax, forest, habitat type, natural, series, woodland

    In British Columbia kinnikinnick indicates sites that are moisture
    deficient because of rapid drainage [70].  Published classification
    schemes listing kinnikinnick as an indicator species or a dominant part of
    vegetation include:

    The Alaska vegetation classification [141]
    A classification of spruce-fir and mixed conifer habitat types of
      Arizona and New Mexico [94]
    Forest habitat types in the Apache, Gila, and part of the Cibola
      National Forests, Arizona and New Mexico [40]
    A preliminary classification of the natural vegetation of Colorado [7]
    Forest habitat types of Montana [107]
    Forest and woodland habitat types (plant associations) of northern New
      Mexico and northern Arizona [77]
    Climax forest series of northern New Mexico and southern Colorado [28]
    A classification of forest habitat types of northern New Mexico and
      southern Colorado [29]
    Riparian zone associations: Deschutes, Ochoco, Fremont, and Winema
      National Forests [72]
    Plant association and management guide: Willamette National Forest [57]
    Plant associations of south Chiloquin and Klamath Ranger
      Districts--Winema National Forest [64]
    Plant associations of the central Oregon Pumice Zone [145]
    Coniferous forest habitat types of northern Utah [90]
    Forested plant associations of the Okanogan National Forest [151]
    The forest communities of Mount Rainier National Park [43
    Forest types of the North Cascades National Park Service Complex [3]
    Alpine and high subalpine plant communities of the North Cascades Range,
      Washington and British Columbia [33]
    Forest vegetation of eastern Washington and northern Idaho [26]
    Field guide to forest habitat types of northern Wisconsin [71]
    Forest vegetation of the Bighorn Mountains, Wyoming: a habitat type
      classification [61]
    Forest vegetation of the Medicine Bow National Forest in southeastern
      Wyoming [5]
    The Pinus contorta forests of Banff and Jasper National Parks: a study
      in comparative synecology and syntaxonomy [76]
    Field guide to forest ecosystems of west-central Alberta [20]

General Ecology

    Broad-scale Impacts of Fire
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the term: cover

    In a controlled experiment, five kinnikinnick plants were burned at
    different temperatures.  Heat treatments lasted about 2 minutes apiece.
    Kinnikinnick response was strongest at the middle temperature of 1112
    degrees F (600 degrees C).  The number of postfire sprouts after 3
    months, and the amount of cover, height of the sprouts, and oven-dry
    biomass after 17 months were recorded [86]:

                            Temperature in degrees F (degrees C)
                       752 (400)           1112 (600)          1472 (800)

                      mean  S.E.          mean  S.E.          mean  S.E.
    Sprout numbers     44    20            48    13            26     7
    Percent cover      42    15            78    19            45    19
    Height (in)         2.4   3.5           2.4   0.4           1.6   0.4
           (cm)         6     9             6     1             4     1
    Biomass (oz)        1.1   0.4           1.9   0.5           0.9   0.4
            (g)        30    11            54    15            26    10
    Broad-scale Impacts of Plant Response to Fire
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the terms: cover, fire use, forest, frequency, heath, prescribed fire, restoration, seed, shrub, succession, wildfire

    Kinnikinnick's response is variable and dependent upon survival of shallow
    regenerative organs and seed sources.  Several studies seem to indicate
    a slow postfire response with a definite increase in early succession.
    Immediate postfire results of a study in Scotland heath were variable.
    In one set of plots, seedling establishment during the first 3 years
    after a March fire was good [87].  A second set of plots monitored
    following the same fire had good vegetative recovery but no seedlings
    [88].  Results of a northwestern Montana study showed the following
    average percent cover of kinnikinnick 3 years after fire on plots burned at
    different intensities [130]:

        Unburned       Light burn     Medium burn     Hot burn
          3.27            1.80            0.89          none

    Following spring burning in a Montana shrubfield created 35 years
    previously by wildfire, kinnikinnick volume decreased the first two
    seasons, but kinnikinnick appeared to be recovering well [101].  Kinnikinnick
    had an average of 0.6 percent frequency in samples from sites where
    slash pile fires occurred 2 to 15 years previously and was considered to
    be a retreater on hotly burned sites [144].  Following fire in Colorado
    lodgepole pine forest stands, kinnikinnick was one of the major shrub
    dominants during the first century of succession [17].  However, data
    from this study do not show any kinnikinnick in the first few years after
    fire [17].  Ten or 11 years after fire on the Tillamook Burn in Oregon,
    kinnikinnick had 11 percent frequency on burned areas and was not present
    in or near plots in adjacent unburned forest [98].  Following fire in
    British Columbia, kinnikinnick cover is weakly correlated with
    environmental factors.  Evidently, kinnikinnick is able to grow on a
    variety of sites under postfire conditions [41].  Twenty-nine years
    after an alpine wildfire in British Columbia, kinnikinnick cover and
    frequency were slightly higher in burned areas of both krummholz and
    heath than in unburned areas [32].

    During the first 3 years after prescribed fire on jack pine clearcuts in
    Michigan, kinnikinnick cover and frequency were very low when compared to
    similar clearcuts that were not burned or undisturbed forest [1].
    Another Michigan study found the highest postfire frequency of kinnikinnick
    occurred 31 years after fire [120].  Results of a paired plot study in
    the northern Wisconsin pine barrens indicated that kinnikinnick frequency
    decreases after a single fire or repeated fires [143].

    The following Research Project Summaries provide information on prescribed fire
    use and postfire response of plant community species including kinnikinnick:
    Fire Ecology
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the terms: duff, fire regime, fuel, root crown, seed

    Kinnikinnick is a sprouting species that is best suited to short fire
    cycles with low fuel buildup and low fire intensities [65,76,114,122].
    It possesses latent buds on the horizontal stems and dormant buds on the
    stembase or root crown that allow sprouting of surviving plants or
    rooted stems [22,23,39,85].  In northern Saskatchewan, it is a strong
    sprouter from golfball-sized lignotubers located in mineral soil [114].
    The crown of kinnikinnick plants may lie just below the top of mineral
    soil, but as duff increases it migrates into the duff layer and becomes
    susceptible to fire [14,92,114].  Kinnikinnick's main roots extend into
    mineral soil, but it has been considered to be incapable of regeneration
    from the roots if the crown is killed [81,92].  Since it can be
    propagated from root cuttings [63], it might be capable of regeneration
    from the roots under some circumstances.  Kinnikinnick may be a
    seedbanking species with fire resistant seed [81,114].

    Find fire regime information for the plant communities in which this
    species may occur by entering the species name in the FEIS home page under
    "Find FIRE REGIMES".
    Fire Management Considerations
    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    More info for the terms: cover, fuel, fuel loading

    Equations have been developed for estimating the fuel loading of kinnikinnick from
    cover and plant height values in the northern and central
    Rocky Mountains [4,16].
    Growth Form (according to Raunkiær Life-form classification)
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    More info for the term: chamaephyte

    Immediate Effect of Fire
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    More info for the terms: duff, severity

    Fire effects vary with the season, severity and intensity of the fire,
    site and surface soil characteristics, and the age, location, and vigor
    of the plants.  When kinnikinnick is rooted in mineral soil, it can survive
    moderate fire [114].  However, when kinnikinnick is rooted in organic soil
    horizons, a fire that removes those horizons will kill kinnikinnick
    [6,14,39].  If the duff and soil are moist and not completely consumed
    by fire, some kinnikinnick root crowns may survive [23].  Rooted stolons
    under rocks, moist logs, or in other protected microsites may also
    survive [22].  Kinnikinnick plants are sufficiently resistant to ignition
    to inhibit fire spread in light, flashy fuels [46,68].
    Life Form
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    Plant Response to Fire
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    More info for the terms: forest, root crown, seed

    Kinnikinnick sprouts from the root crown and establishes from
    seedbank-stored seed after fire [85,114,115,129].  Kinnikinnick seeds have
    been reported to survive fire in the upper soil and be stimulated to
    germinate by heat from the fire [114].  Rowe [114] suggests that
    kinnikinnick may be a shade-intolerant species that stores seed in the

    After fire in heathland, kinnikinnick sprouts vigorously and expands
    rapidly [85].  Kinnikinnick reinvades burned sites from adjacent, unburned
    vegetation and/or from seed [6,23,39,81,148]. 

    In boreal forest, kinnikinnick has regenerated from surviving basal sprouts
    following fire [115,129].  Full recovery in many areas has been slow
    Post-fire Regeneration
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    More info for the terms: ground residual colonizer, root crown, secondary colonizer, shrub

       Prostrate woody plant, stem growing on organic mantle
       Small shrub, adventitious-bud root crown
       Ground residual colonizer (on-site, initial community)
       Initial-offsite colonizer (off-site, initial community)
       Secondary colonizer - off-site seed
    Regeneration Processes
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    More info for the terms: adventitious, duff, lignotuber, litter, natural, seed

    Vegetative:  Regeneration is primarily asexual [129].  After the second
    year, the stems (stolons) produce adventitious, feeding roots at the
    nodes which seldom grow deeper than the duff layer [92].  If a stem is
    severed from the original plant, roots develop which penetrate into
    mineral soil [92].  When plants are growing in sandy soil or loose duff,
    the creeping stems often grow under the surface [14,111,129].  After 7
    or 8 years, small nodules may appear at intervals along buried stems.
    These nodules resemble nitrogen-fixing root nodules but examination has
    shown these nodules to be composed of latent buds that have no ability
    to fix nitrogen [38,136].  In eastern North America and Scotland, plants
    subjected to physical damage or fire appear to have more of these
    structures [136].  On 10-year-old or older stems, there may be as many
    as 100 buds surrounding the lignotuber [111].  Kinnikinnick's clonal
    pattern is generally compact.  Recruitment of new seedlings into
    established clones has been reported [36].  A growth model based on a
    detailed study of the morphology and growth of kinnikinnick is available

    Seed:  The berrylike drupes persist on the plants through winter and are
    dispersed by animals and gravity [114,134].  Seeds have hard seedcoats
    and dormant embryos, and may be stored in the soil [11,81].  Soil-stored
    seed has been found near the surface [87].  Study results indicate that
    removing the surface litter increases seedling establishment, although
    the total number of germinants in this study was very small [87].  In a
    natural environment, seedling growth is slow for the first 3 years, then
    increases.  During the first year, root growth exceeds shoot growth
    [111].  Kinnikinnick plants which originated naturally as seedlings appear
    to be rare [111].
    Successional Status
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    More info for the terms: cover, forest, lichens, shrub, shrubs, succession, taiga

    Kinnikinnick is a seral, shade-intolerant species often found in seral,
    open pine forests [47,69,96,113,114,148].  It grows best in high light
    situations and becomes very rare when shade becomes intense [8,41,123].
    In the open, kinnikinnick forms a compact and intricate mat; under a
    canopy, long, thin trailing stems creep along the forest floor. Shoots
    are more upright under partial shade than in the open [111].  Pubescence
    of cuttings from the same plant may vary with light intensity and
    substrate [117].  Results of a Rocky Mountain study of postdisturbance
    vegetation cover indicate that the primary variables governing early
    seral kinnikinnick cover are overtopping cover of other shrubs and site
    variables such as elevation [78].

    Kinnikinnick pioneers on dry rock outcrops in the Pacific Northwest [42].
    It is an integral part of succession on dry, stable, sand dunes in the
    Great Lakes and along both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts [34,42].  On
    Lake Michigan sand dunes, it invades bunchgrass communities and thrives
    under slow burial by drifting sand that covers part of the plant [103].
    On drier sites in Yukon Territory and the Alaskan taiga, kinnikinnick is
    part of secondary succession in communities with aspen and willows
    (Salix spp.)  [56,140].  Kinnikinnick enters seral communities on glacial
    outwash in the pioneer stage, reaches its highest cover early in the
    meadow stage, and continues declining in the early shrub stage [139].
    Kinnikinnick succeeds lichens in northern Manitoba when the lichens are
    damaged by caribou use [93].


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    More info for the terms: fruit, seed

    Fruit dispersal in eastern deciduous forests occurs between August and
    March [134].  In California, flowering primarily occurs between March
    and May, fruit ripening between June and August, and seed dispersal from
    August to March [11].  In Ontario, bloom is in May and June, and fruit
    is ripe by August or September [127].  In the northern Great Plains,
    flowering is in June, and fruit develops by September [132].  In New
    England, flowering is from May 1 to June 10 [125].  Virginia and
    disjunct Georgia populations bloom in May and June [152].  In the Black
    Hills of South Dakota, growth begins in May and ends in September, but
    over half the season's total growth occurs during June [123].
    Phenological observations of kinnikinnick made over an 8-year period east
    of the Continental Divide in Montana and in Yellowstone National Park
    are summarized below [121]:

                                Earliest        Average          Latest
                                  Date            Date            Date
    Leaf buds burst                May 27          June  6         June 22
    Leaves full grown             July 21        August  2       August 15
    Flowers start                  May 15           May 30         June 20
    Flowers end                    May 31          June 11         June 30
    Fruits ripe                    May 25        August 23    September 25
    Seed fall starts (2
      observations)                October 16       October 16      October 16


    Management considerations
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    More info for the terms: cover, fruit, scarification, seed

    Kinnikinnick increases following moderate disturbances [151].  In western
    Montana, it increased strongly after clearcutting with no further
    treatment but showed little change after clearcutting with broadcast
    burning or mechanical scarification [6].  It is easily killed by
    scraping or fire but is able to regenerate from surviving parts or seed
    [6].  In north-central Washington it is often the only species growing
    on abandoned stock driveways [151].  Kinnikinnick is moderately resistant
    to trampling and has low short-term and long-term resilience [19].  In
    northern Idaho, its cover was sharply reduced in grazed stands, and it
    was considered to be less resistant to trampling due to its small size
    and shallow rhizomes (buried stems) [153].  In the Wind River Range of
    Wyoming, kinnikinnick increases in response to heavy livestock grazing and
    trampling and becomes characteristic of disturbed aspen (Populus
    tremuloides) stands [110].

    Kinnikinnick is a host to yellow witch's broom, which also affects three
    species of spruce (Picea spp.) in Alberta [148].  Kinnikinnick's
    sensitivity to herbicides varies from susceptible to intermediate
    resistance, depending on both the type of treatment and the life stage
    treated [9,13].  Resprouts following disturbance are easily killed by
    herbicides, while old-growth is more difficult to kill [13].  Detailed
    treatment information is available [13,104].

    Kinnikinnick is relatively insensitive to the effects of sulfur dioxide gas
    [60].  Concentrations of heavy metals due to air pollution have been
    determined for fruit, stems, and leaves [126].


    Cover Value
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    Kinnikinnick has little or no cover value for most game animals but may
    have fair cover value for upland game birds in Colorado and Utah.  It
    offers fair to good cover for small mammals and small nongame birds
    Importance to Livestock and Wildlife
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    More info for the term: fruit

    Kinnikinnick browse is of moderate importance to bighorn sheep, mountain
    goat, black-tailed deer, and white-tailed deer [9,142].  Kinnikinnick is
    important to moderately important browse for Rocky Mountain mule deer
    [9,24,75].  Elk browse it on winter ranges in Alberta [148].  During
    early spring in Montana, moose browse kinnikinnick in snowfree areas near
    trees on south and west aspects [133].

    Since kinnikinnick's low-quality fruit spoils slowly, it lasts through
    winter and is available when other fruits are gone [134].  The fruits of
    kinnikinnick are eaten by songbirds, gamebirds, including five species of
    grouse and wild turkey, deer, elk, and small mammals [49,89,134,148].
    Black bear and grizzly bear eat kinnikinnick fruits in the autumn, but
    fruits are especially important to bears in the early spring
    [55,83,84,148].  In Montana, grouse may be attracted to very recent
    burns by fire-exposed kinnikinnick fruit [68].

    Hummingbirds take nectar from the flowers of kinnikinnick and have been
    observed to alight momentarily to probe low flowers [108]. 
    Nutritional Value
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    The energy and protein values of kinnikinnick browse are low [30].  Results
    of a nutrient study in stands of sapling and pole-sized ponderosa pine
    in the Black Hills of South Dakota showed no trends in the nutrients
    sampled relative to stocking (shade) levels that ranged from 0 (0 m2/ha
    basal area) to unthinned (40 m2/ha basal area) [124].  Production
    decreases when crown cover exceeds 40 percent [105].  Average
    percentages of the six nutrients studied for kinnikinnick forage are given
    below [124]:

    Attribute                    Pole Stands              Sapling Stands
                              Mean  Standard Error     Mean  Standard Error
    Crude Protein              5.5       0.1            5.7       0.1
    Acid Detergent Fiber      25.8       0.6           26.8       0.1
    Acid Detergent Lignin     12.6       0.3           13.3       0.2
    Ash                        3.15      0.55           3.08      0.09
    Calcium                    0.63      0.01           0.60      0.01
    Phosphorus                 0.14      0.01           0.14      0.01

    A similar nutrient study done previously in the Black Hills gave the
    percent composition by season [45]:

    Attribute               Oct. 1      Jan. 1     April 1     July 1  
    Carotene (micrograms
     per gram)               18.67       10.86      31.97       38.10
    Moisture                 47.54       49.11      36.65       60.81
    Ash                       1.93        2.01       2.27        1.66
    Crude Fat                 5.97        4.88       8.28        4.72
    Crude Fiber               9.00        8.29       9.18        6.22
    Crude Protein             2.70        2.55       2.98        3.30
    N-Free Extract           32.86       33.16      40.63       23.29
    Phosphorus                0.064       0.067      0.09        0.08
    Calcium                   0.39        0.60       0.52        0.22
    Iron (ppm)              270.75      309.28     236.51      173.70
    Manganese (ppm)          12.38       13.36      20.91       16.29
    Other uses and values
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    More info for the terms: cover, fruit, layering

    Smoking the leaves as a tobacco substitute is the most widely mentioned
    human use of kinnikinnick.  However, medical uses of kinnikinnick leaves were
    recognized by early Romans, Native Americans, and settlers [54,95,142].
    At the present, kinnikinnick leaves are used medicinally in Poland and many
    other countries [46].  The most important medical use of the leaves is
    for treating urinary tract disease.  They can also be used to make a
    highly astringent wash and as a vasoconstrictor for the endometrium of
    the uterus [46,54,79,95].  Some Native American tribes powdered the
    leaves and applied them to sores [54].  For medical use the leaves are
    best collected in the fall [46].

    The berrylike drupes have dry, insipid, and tasteless flesh when raw but
    are useful emergency food [53,54,142].  Native Americans fried them or
    dried them and used them in pemmican [54].  The fruit is also used in
    jelly, jam, and sauces [53].  In Scandinavia, kinnikinnick is used
    commercially to tan leather [79].

    Kinnikinnick is an attractive and excellent garden ground cover on sunny,
    sandy banks, along roadways, rock walls, rockeries, parking strips, and
    other sunny places in urban areas [73,128].  It withstands low summer
    moisture; some forms will withstand salt spray, grow very slowly, or
    grow under semishady conditions [73,128].  Branches with fruit are used
    for fall and Christmas decorations [53].  Kinnikinnick plants are available
    in nurseries [11,119].  Propagation by layering or rooted cuttings is
    easy and well described [46,73,128].
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    More info for the term: fruit

    Kinnikinnick is unpalatable to domestic livestock but relished by wildlife
    [49].  It is palatable to white-tailed deer in the Black Hills of South
    Dakota from fall to late spring [58].  Kinnikinnick fruits are relished and
    highly important to black bear in the Yukon [84].  The fruit is of
    moderate importance to grizzly bear in Montana [83].  The degree of use
    shown by livestock and wildlife species for kinnikinnick is rated as
    follows [30]:

                             CO      MT      UT      WY      ND
    Cattle                  poor    poor    poor    poor    poor
    Sheep                   poor    poor    poor    poor    poor
    Horses                  poor    poor    poor    poor    poor
    Pronghorn               ----    ----    poor    poor    poor
    Elk                     fair    poor    poor    poor    ----
    Mule deer               fair    fair    poor    fair    fair
    White-tailed deer       ----    fair    ----    fair    fair
    Small mammals           good    fair    good    good   
    Small nongame birds     good    fair    fair    fair   
    Upland game birds       good    fair    good    good   
    Waterfowl               ----    ----    poor    poor   
    Value for rehabilitation of disturbed sites
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    More info for the terms: scarification, seed, stratification

    Kinnikinnick is very useful in erosion control plantings and attractive
    along highway embankments [11,73,118,148].  It is recommended for
    revegetation projects on well-drained soils in Alaska and moist to dry
    sites in most of Alberta.  It is well suited to coarse-textured soils
    that are low in nutrients.  Kinnikinnick can be aggressive on open sites and
    may invade disturbed sites vegetatively [148].  Its potential is better
    as a long-term revegetative species than as a short-term revegatative
    species because its growth rate is moderate [30,148].  Growth is good on
    gentle to steep sites [30].

    Stem cuttings taken in the fall are described as the best method of
    establishment [11,63,148].  Kinnikinnick roots normally form
    endomycorrhizae, and cuttings can be inoculated with endomycorrhizal
    fungi prior to rooting [99].  Propagation by root cuttings has been done
    successfully [63].  Good seed crops occur at 1- to 5-year intervals.
    Seedling establishment is difficult and time consuming
    [11,30,46,146,148].  Details on seed cleaning, stratification,
    scarification, and germination as well as culture are well known and
    described [11,46,142,146,148].  Seed is available commercially [148].


    Common Names
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    provided by Fire Effects Information System Plants
    The currently accepted scientific name of kinnikinnick is Arctostaphylos
    uva-ursi (L.) Spreng [59,67]. The following forms are recognized

    A. u. forma adenotricha (Fern. & Macbr.) Wells
    A. u. forma coactilis (Fern. & Macbr.) Wells
    A. u. forma longipilosa (Packer & Denford) Wells
    A. u. forma stipitata (Packer & Denford) Wells
    A. u. forma uva-ursi

    Kinnikinnick hybridizes with hairy manzanita (A. columbiana) to produce A.
    Xmedia Greene [59,73]. It occasionally hybridizes with greenleaf
    manzanita (A. patula) [150].