Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Shadblow Service Berry, Downy Serviceberry, Canadian Serviceberry
Amelanchier canadensis

Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Amelanchier (am-uh-LAN-kee-er) (Info)
Species: canadensis (ka-na-DEN-sis) (Info)

Synonym:Amelanchier canadensis var. subintegra
Synonym:Amelanchier lucida

4 vendors have this plant for sale.

20 members have or want this plant for trade.

View this plant in a garden


20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade


Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Seed Collecting:
Remove fleshy coating on seeds before storing
Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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There are a total of 12 photos.
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8 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive RosemaryK On Nov 14, 2014, RosemaryK from Lexington, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:

One of a limited number of small trees native to this continent that can grow in fairly deep shade under mature deciduous trees and a white pine. However, it does not fruit after about 15 years to establish. Visiters to the woodland garden seem to always notice and comment favorably about it anyway. The twisted trunks and fine foliage are distinguishing features.

Positive Rickwebb On Dec 3, 2013, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

An irregular but neat, clean habit. The only possible problem is if the delicious fruit is borne over paved areas and will stain them for awhile. Serviceberry trees and shrubs do well in a range of well-drained soil that is acid or slightly alkaline of pH 5 to 7.5. They even do well in open, exposed, windy areas, despite normally growing along forest edges in nature. I recognize this species because it has more trunks and more slender ones than the other tree Serviceberry species, often 10 to 20, though fewer is possible. Like other serviceberry trees, this native plant should be used more in landscapes.

Positive wadeinthewater On May 26, 2009, wadeinthewater from Verona, WI (Zone 4b) wrote:

We find this tree grows well in heavy clay as well. I do top dress with compost but the nursery said not to amend the soil when planting so it can learn to live in the place it's planted, it took a few years to get established but now it's beautiful. And why it's called Serviceberry? Graves couldn't be dug in the winter so when this tree bloomed it signaled that the graves could be dug, the Funeral "service" was delayed until the spring, hence the name "Service Berry".

Positive so1ange On May 25, 2009, so1ange from Zaandijk
Netherlands wrote:

I have been looking for this plant ever since a Canadian friend of mine gave me a pot of Saskatoon Berry Jam. When I saw Shadblow Service Berry in the newsletter I had to check it out because it is such a strange name, and I was so happy to see that this IS the Saskatoon Berry! I don't really care for sweet foods but this stuff is delicious, rates right up there with Mullberries in my book. I hope it will do well in my northern european garden, cause I am going to purchase the seeds immediately.

anyone know why this underrated fruit it is called a 'service' berry?

Neutral susierosey On May 25, 2009, susierosey from Millstone, NJ wrote:

We have three Serviceberries planted five years ago. One multi stemmed tree was badly damaged by rubbing deer the first fall but is slowly recovering now that it is protected by early fall. This is the first year I have not (yet) experienced rust, probably because I treated all with "Serenade" several times last year and was diligent about removing infected berries and leaves. My biggest problem has been tackling the aphids which seem to return every year. I have used ladybugs, water spray and organic control. It is a lovely small tree but on my property requires attention.

Positive mainline123 On Sep 2, 2008, mainline123 from Wayne, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

This is an excellent shrub. I planted three as understory in my front yard to provide some privacy from the road. The have just enough foliage to provide privacy without creating a barricade. They have bloomed beautifully. The location has well amended soil and has fairly consistent moisture.

Positive ILvillapark On Sep 1, 2004, ILvillapark from Villa Park, IL wrote:

This native shrub/tree works well in most situations. However, the more extreme hot temperatures of Illinois summers require proper placement of this tree. An exposed, dry site should be avoided. Dappled shade and moist soil make for a happier plant. I had to relocate mine after it struggled for over a year and a half. Watering helped but it never seemed to do enough. The new location was less exposed to direct sun and the tree responded positively. It stopped losing leaves and started to branch out.

Positive jq On Jul 26, 2004, jq from White Lake, MI wrote:

A wonderful small tree or shrub. I would recommend this group of natives to any gardener. Birds flock to the ripening berries in June (southeast Michigan). Orioles, Catbirds, Robins, Tanagers, Eastern Bluebirds, just to name a few. If you can beat the birds to the berries they make a good tasting, somewhat chewy, pie filling. These small trees and shrubs sucker - it is their nature - and the resulting shape is very attractive. Trimming off excessive suckers will not harm the tree. However, do allow Serviceberry to have several main trunks - it is not meant to look like an oak. Dainty white flowers cover the tree early in spring. The small ovate leaves turn a gorgeous apricot color in fall and never require raking. Simply run your mower over them and mulch them into lawn food.
These tough natives are literally trouble-free - they easily endure -40 degree winters here in Michigan and seem to do well in direct sun as well as in the shade of large trees. I notice landscapers are catching on to their trememdous value in the garden. It is easier to find several varieties at nurseries these days. Just plant them away from your car - all those delicious berries and all those hungry birds add up to target practice.

Positive lupinelover On Jan 10, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

This is very worthy of growing, despite its suckering tendencies. The flowering and later fruiting are attractive to wildlife. Serviceberries are edible to humans, too, and make wonderful fruit compotes and preserves.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Wasilla, Alaska
Prescott, Arizona
Apple Valley, California
San Anselmo, California
Denver, Colorado
Elizabeth, Colorado
Coeur D Alene, Idaho
Glen Ellyn, Illinois
Villa Park, Illinois
Chesterton, Indiana
New Albany, Indiana
Russell, Kentucky
Waldoboro, Maine
Lexington, Massachusetts
Nantucket, Massachusetts
Garden City, Michigan
Norway, Michigan
Saint Cloud, Minnesota
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Lambert, Montana
Annandale, New Jersey
Westwood, New Jersey
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Cassville, New York
Farmingdale, New York
Jefferson, New York
Rochester, New York
West Kill, New York
Penrose, North Carolina
Mantua, Ohio
Middletown, Ohio
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Sand Springs, Oklahoma
Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Indiana, Pennsylvania
Mount Joy, Pennsylvania
Wayne, Pennsylvania
Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania (2 reports)
Arlington, Tennessee
Hazelhurst, Wisconsin
Verona, Wisconsin

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