huckleberry Ericaceae Gaylussacia
spp. Kunth symbol: GAYLU
Leaf: Alternate, simple, some species evergreen, elliptical to obovate, margins ciliate, 1 to 1 1/2 inch long, bright green above, underside with yellow resin dots (use lens) that will cause them to be sticky.
Flower: Small (1/4 inch), white to pink bell-shaped with 5 lobes in small axillary clusters appearing in spring.
Fruit: Small, round, blue-black, shiny berry-like drupe, edible but not very sweet, ripens in late summer; easily distinguished from blueberries by its ten large seeds.
Twig: Slender, zigzag, reddish brown with fine gray pubescent, buds small pointed and gray-brown.
Bark: Gray-brown, finely peeling.
Form: Very small, slender, multi-stemmed shrub up to 4 feet tall. Stems arise from numerous underground rhizomes.
Looks like: highbush blueberry - lowbush blueberry - sparkleberry - deerberry
Additional Range Information: Gaylussacia spp. is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting huckleberry.
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