Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Lingonberry, Mountain Cranberry, Cowberry, Foxberry
Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus

Family: Ericaceae (er-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Vaccinium (vak-SIN-ee-um) (Info)
Species: vitis-idaea var. minus

5 members have or want this plant for trade.

Edible Fruits and Nuts

6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

USDA Zone 2a: to -45.5 C (-50 F)
USDA Zone 2b: to -42.7 C (-45 F)
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)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
4.5 or below (very acidic)
4.6 to 5.0 (highly acidic)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

Click thumbnail
to view:

By Todd_Boland
Thumbnail #1 of Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus by Todd_Boland

By Todd_Boland
Thumbnail #2 of Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus by Todd_Boland

By Grasmussen
Thumbnail #3 of Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus by Grasmussen

By Grasmussen
Thumbnail #4 of Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus by Grasmussen

By Grasmussen
Thumbnail #5 of Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus by Grasmussen

By claypa
Thumbnail #6 of Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus by claypa


3 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Erutuon On Sep 1, 2012, Erutuon from Minneapolis, MN wrote:

I bought this last year (2011) from Betty Ann Addison of Gardens of Rice Creek. I already had a cultivar of the European variety, which was doing well, but I was eager to get the American variety when I saw that it was significantly different. The American variety is much shorter, has differently shaped leaves (wider, perhaps?) and to my eyes looks much cuter. It, unlike the European variety, seems to have branched stems. I haven't yet gotten any fruit from either.

Positive Grasmussen On Oct 1, 2006, Grasmussen from Anchorage, AK (Zone 4a) wrote:

There are two recognised subspecies of Vaccinium vitis-idaea. This subspecies minus, occurs in the New World. Its range extends from Alaska across the Canadian Arctic and south into New England and the Great Lakes. It is common throughout most of Alaska where the berries are collected for food. The berries have a taste and texture very similar to cranberries, but they are smaller. In Alaskan the plants are prostrate, growing or trailing along the grown. They are considered to be intermediate between blueberries and cranberries.

Positive Todd_Boland On Jan 17, 2005, Todd_Boland from St. John's, NL (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is a very common plant of the Newfoundland barrens. While the European species recahes 6-12" tall, the variety 'minus' is usually under 3". The berries are a local delicacy, made into jams, compotes and used in muffins. We call them 'partridgeberry', not to be confused with Mitchella repens, which is also called partridgeberry, but is not edible. We essentially use them as a substitute for cranberries. The shiny evergreen foliage, pretty pink flowers and bright red fruit make them a suitable candidate for a rock garden setting.


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

Anchorage, Alaska
Corinna, Maine
Minneapolis, Minnesota

We recommend Firefox
Overwhelmed? There's a lot to see here. Try starting at our homepage.

[ Home | About | Advertise | Media Kit | Mission | Featured Companies | Submit an Article | Terms of Use | Tour | Rules | Privacy Policy | Contact Us ]

Back to the top

Copyright © 2000-2015 Dave's Garden, an Internet Brands company. All Rights Reserved.

Hope for America