Virginia Tech Dendrology

sparkleberry Ericaceae Vaccinium arboreum Marsh. Listen to the Latin symbol: VAAR
Leaf: Alternate, simple, entire or finely serrated margin, oval to oblong, 1 to 2 1/2 inches long, leathery, nearly evergreen, very shiny green above, dull and paler below.
Flower: Small (1/3 inch), white, bell-shaped, occur in small clusters, appearing in mid-spring.
Fruit: Round, dry berry (1/4 inch diameter), shiny black when ripe in fall.
Twig: Slender, zigzag, red or green turning grayish brown, small leaf scar with one bundle scar, maybe scruffy fuzzy.
Bark: Shreddy and patchy with reds, browns and grays present.
Form: Large shrub or small tree that can reach 30 feet tall. Champion sparkleberry is 1.4 feet in diameter.
Looks like: Elliott's blueberry - highbush blueberry - deerberry - huckleberry
leaf flower fruit twig bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Vaccinium arboreum is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting sparkleberry.
More Information: Fall Color
External Links: USDAFS Additional Silvics - USDA Plants Database
All material © 2017 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson