Virginia Tech Dendrology

maleberry Ericaceae Lyonia ligustrina (L.) DC. Listen to the Latin symbol: LYLIL
Leaf: Alternate, deciduous, simple, oblong to elliptical, pointed tip, serrated to entire margins, 1 1/2 to 3 inches long, dark green above and maybe a bit hairy, lighter green and often hairy below.
Flower: Small (1/4 inch), white, broadly urn-shaped, hang in large clusters from leaf axils of last years growth, appearing in early summer.
Fruit: Dry reddish brown, 5-valved capsules, 1/4 inch long; mature in late summer, persistent.
Twig: Slender reddish brown, a bit angled particularly at the nodes, initially a bit fuzzy but later glabrous, leaf scar with 1 bundle scar.
Bark: Brown to reddish brown with long horizontal splits developing.
Form: A dense shrub reaching up to 6 feet tall; spreads from heavily branching rhizomes.
Looks like: staggerbush - fetterbush lyonia - coast leucothoe - swamp doghobble
leaf flower fruit bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Lyonia ligustrina is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting maleberry.
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