trailing arbutus Ericaceae Epigaea
Leaf: Alternate, evergreen, ovate to nearly oval, hairy margins, 2 to 3 inches long, heart-shaped base and somewhat thickened, shiny dark green above, a bit lighter and hairy beneath.
Flower: Perfect, white, pink to nearly red, 5 petals, up to 1/2 inch across, groups of 3 to 5, very fragrant, appearing in early to mid-spring.
Fruit: Berry-like, round capsule, 1/2 inch across, pale yellow-orange, ripens in late summer.
Twig: Basically not present, nearly prostrate stems are reddish brown, hairy and slightly shreddy; buds with loose green scales.
Form: Low growing, creeping woody herb, large leaves are mostly all that is visible.
Additional Range Information: Epigaea repens is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting trailing arbutus.
External Links: 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