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Bearberry vs Bunchberry

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Cornus canadensis

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Bearberry
Bunchberry

Bearberry is a dwarf shrub known for its creamy pink flowers and red edible fruits.

It is great as a filler in gardens and flowerbeds in place of invasive ground cover plants, like English Ivy.

Bearberry will attract hummingbirds, butterflies and bees to your property. It is one of the top 12 plants recommended by the Alberta Native Bee Council to support pollinators.

The Bunchberry, or Quatre-Temps as it is commonly known in Quebec, is an excellent ornamental plant to have in your garden. With star-shaped white flowers in spring and clusters of bright red berries in the fall, this is one of the most refined and hardy groundcovers available. The foliage has ornamental value, with leaves going from a deep green in the spring and summer to a beautiful brick-red in the fall.

Bunchberry is a spreading evergreen perennial with a ground-hugging habit of growth. This plant is not well suited for urban areas close to streetsides, as it is quite intolerant to pollution. It is Canada’s national flower.

According to a poll done by the Master Gardeners of Ontario, it is one of the most recognizable Canadian flowers.

Its flowers grow with elastic petals and "fire" its pollen with the force of 2000-3000 times the force of gravity.

BEARBERRY QUICK FACTS

BUNCHBERRY QUICK FACTS

Zone: 1b
Zone: 1b
Height: 0.1 m (0.3 ft)
Height: 0.2 m (0.6 ft)
Spread: 0.9 m (3 ft)
Spread: 0.6 m (2.0 ft)
Moisture: dry, normal
Moisture: normal, wet
Light: partial shade, full sun
Light: any
Fall colour: brick red
Berries: small red berries
Berries: small, red
Flavor: sweet
Harvest: August/September
Flowers: small, purple-white
Flowers: white
Growth rate: slow
Growth rate: fast
Life span: medium
Life span: short
Suckering: medium
Suckering: medium





Other Names: kinnikinnick, mealberry, sandberry