How tall does a mountain ash tree grow

Mountain Ash Tree Guide (Sorbus Mountain)

  •  Anna Martin
  •   Plants & Trees


Though called the Mountain Ash, it is not a type of ash tree. Instead, it is a member of the rose family. Native to North America, you can find them in several different habitats. But, it is prevalent in the mountains around the rock outcrops and the forests. The mountain ash Sorbus or the Sorbus aucuparia is one of the most widely planted of a large group of similar trees and shrubs.


It is a small plant with dark green colored leaves that change their color to reddish-purple, orange, and yellow in the fall. Also known as Rowans, these are deciduous, attractive, ornamental trees that are an ideal pick for small or average-sized gardens.


In spring, they are covered with showy white flowers, followed by giant clusters of berry-like flaming red-hued fruits that the birds and other wildlife love. Since it is susceptible to pests, diseases, and fire, Sorbus mountain ash trees are relatively short-lived.


Jump To

  • At A Glance
  • How Do I Identify A Mountain Ash Tree?
  • Growing Tips
  • Types
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Conclusion


Mountain Ash Snapshot


Native toNorthern Hemisphere and distributed in temperate Eurasia and North America from Newfoundland to Georgia.
Botanically CalledSorbus aucuparia
Hardiness ZonesThey grow through USDA hardiness zones two through five.
SizeThey grow between 10 and 30′ with a spread of around 15′ at maturity.
Growth rateMountain ash tree growth rate is slow. Its height increases at less than 12″ per year.
SunThe tree thrives in full sun or partial shade. But, it demands at least four hours of unfiltered sunlight every day.
FlowersShowy white flowers that usually pop in early summer or late spring.
SoilIt prefers acidic, loamy, moist, sandy, well-drained, wet, and clay soils.
FruitsSmall, red, or orange-red berry-like fruits
LeavesIt may have spear-shaped of 1½–4″ in length or oblong-shaped leaves that are 12″ long with 11-17 leaflets.


How Do I Identify A Mountain Ash Tree?

The Mountain ash Sorbus is not a part of the Ash tree family. The Mountain Ash is from the same species as the rose bush, the Rosaceae. Even though some types of mountain ash trees have a more traditional tree-like form, many have a shrub-like appearance. The former grow tall at 50 feet. Typically, Mountain ash has some distinctive characteristics:


1. Branches and buds – Intertwined across each other, they do not alternate along the stems. But, the branches and the buds tend to die. So, not every branch will have a counterpart.


2. Flowers – Most varieties have giant clusters of white flowers that blossom in the spring. Every flower has five petals.


3. Bark – The mountain ash is smooth and has a gray bark with an orange cast. Most of them have abrasions. In the established tree, the bark changes its color to brownish-gray and forms diamond-shaped ridges.


4. Leaves – Most types of mountain ashes have compound leaves with fifteen small leaflets. Some mountain ash Sorbus varieties are long pinnate, approximately nine inches. Typically, all categories have dark green-hued leaves in summer and spring. However, they change their color to a bright blend of orange, red, and yellow in the fall.


On the base, the leaves are lighter. Most species have serrated leaflet margins with all leaflets arranged opposite one another, except for the one at its base.


5. Fruits – You will see most kinds of Mountain Ash with berry-like fruits in orange-red colors. Harvested in the fall, the different types of mountain ash trees have varied colored fruits, ranging from bright orange to beach, pink, yellow, red, and white. Though edible, the fruits are acidic and do not have a very delectable flavor.


6. Seeds – In these trees, the individual seeds are packed in the samaras and appear in clusters. They all have a single wing and remain attached to the tree till winter.


Growing Tips

The growing tips and care guide for these trees will vary depending on where you live. Ideally, the plant demands a cool climate and despises humid summers for an excellent mountain ash tree growth rate.


The plant thrives in USDA hardiness zones two through five. Mountain ash can tolerate shade, but they enjoy full sun. So, plant it accordingly. Choosing the right location is vital for mountain ash care. Though forgiving, the mountain ash cannot tolerate compacted soil, drought, pollution, flooding, salt, or heated areas.


So, if you opt for an area sans these concerns, your mountain ash will live long.


A. When to plant?

Plant the bare-root rowans in the growing months from November to March. However, if grown in containers or pots, you can plant them any time of the year, but not during the summers. When you plan them in colder months, it helps Mountain Ash settle well before the commencement of the growing season.


B. Mandatory soil assessment test

Before you dig the plant, conduct a soil test to ensure that the plant grows in acidic soil with 4.5 to 6 pH. If not, you can add amendments to make the soil more acidic. Ideally, the soil should be well-draining and moist.


C. Pruning

Sorbus mountain ash trees  are a plant with minimum pruning needs. You can remove the diseased, dead, or dying growth to thin the plant. Also, conduct pruning strictly in early spring or late autumn.


Different Types of Mountain Ash Trees

Here is a list of their different varieties:

1. Sorbus:- ‘Eastern Promise’ is a pink-berried Mountain Ash. It is a beautiful, small tree, suitable for smaller gardens. This rounded tree yields small white flowers in clusters during spring. The plant has dark green leaves, which become orange and deep purple as they approach autumn and change to orange before they leave the plants.

It is a deciduous tree. This mountain ash Sorbus is a forgiving plant. So, you can plant it in various soil types. But, if you wish for this plant to thrive, you must grow it in well-drained, moist soil in partial shade or full sun.


2. Sorbus Aucuparia:- Rowan, mountain ash, or European Mountain ash is a deciduous variety. It is a shrub from the rose family and is an incredibly variable species. It comprises the trees native to Europe, Africa, and Asia.


It is a frost-hardy plant that is not demanding in maintenance. These types of mountain ash trees produce white flowers in clusters in spring, followed by yellow autumn leaves and red berries.


3. Sorbus Reducta:- It is a deciduous, small suckering shrub. This plant yields leaves, which have a maximum of fifteen glossy dark green, toothed leaflets that change their color to purple in autumn. They produce white flower clusters, followed by pink and then white fruits.


Sorbus ‘Joseph Rock’ is the ideal specimen for small yards and gardens. It is an upright tree with pinnate leaves. As autumn approaches, the mountain ash tree leaves change their color to orange, and when fall starts, the leaves are purple and red-hued, which is a beautiful contrast to their butter-yellow berries.


4. Sorbus Cashmiriana:- Also called the Kashmir rowan, it is a vast spreading but small deciduous shrub or tree that grows between six and eight meters. Its pinkish white flowers appear in the spring.


They are popular amongst the bees. Over time, the flowers change to pearl-shaped white berries. Its leaves comprise 19 oblong leaflets. It is one of the more beautiful types of mountain ash trees that people grow for its white fruit clusters.
5. Sorbus sargentiana:-It  is another beautiful ornamental plant. Native to southwestern Sichuan and northern Yunnan in China, Sorbus Sargentiana is a mid-sized deciduous plant. It belongs to the Rosaceae family and yields white flowers, which change to red berry clusters. Its leaves change their color to orange-red in the fall. The the mountain ash tree plant thrives at an altitude between 2,000 and 3,200 meters.
6. Sorbus commixta:- ‘Embley’ or the Japanese Rowan is native to Japan. But, you can also spot this mid-sized, upright plant on the Korean island of Ulleungdo and Sakhalin (in the Russian Far East). Commixta implies mingled or mixed, which is how it gets its name. The plant has creamy-white flowers that change to deep red fruits. In the fall season, its leaves turn orange and bright red.


Frequently Asked Questions

Ques 1. How long does it take for mountain ash to mature?

Ans. Typically, mountain ash lives for at least four centuries. It takes about two to three decades to reach maturity.


Ques 2. How tall do mountain ash trees grow?

Ans. Usually, mountain ash grows to 33 feet, but the height depends on the variety and species. At maturity, it has a vast spread of 15 feet.

Ques 3. Are mountain ash trees fast growing?

Ans. Mountain ash tree growth rate is slow. Its height increases at less than 12″ per year.

Ques 4. Are there any dwarf mountain ash trees?

Ans. There are several dwarf mountain ash trees. The Dwarf Mountain Ash Sorbus reducta is one such variety.


Ques 5. Are mountain ash trees invasive?

Ans. The European Mountain Ash Tree can be invasive. It naturalizes fast and propagates readily. In seven states, it is invasive, where it shouldered native shrubs and escaped cultivation.


Ques 6. Mountain ash tree berries – Are they edible?

Ans. Though edible,  mountain ash berries are not very tasty. Also, eating them in large quantities may be unsafe.

Ques 7. What is mountain ash used for?

Ans. The Mountain Ash tree is used for:

  • People use mountain ash berries to make medicine. It may be dried, cooked, or used fresh.
  • The plant helps with heart diseases, gout, diarrhea, and several other conditions.
  • Mountain ash is a popular ingredient in stewed fruit, marmalade, vinegar, juice, tea mixtures, and liqueur.
  • Berries contain Vitamin C and can help reduce inflammation.
  • Some even use the Mountain ash as a remedy against kidney diseases, arthritis, blood purification, menstrual concerns, and lung conditions.


Ques 8. What is the difference between American mountain ash and European mountain ash?

Ans. American Mountain Ash is a beautiful, mid-sized plant. It blooms in late spring with spectacular white flowers that appear in clusters. It is a perfect specimen for the ornamental tree in a residential setting.


Their decorative orange berries stay attached to the trees across winters and are a delight for the birds and wildlife. They grow to 10 meters with a six-meter spread. They need full sun to thrive. Their fall color is scarlet-red. The American Mountain Ash has a high pollution tolerance. These types of mountain ash trees have a medium growth rate.


Similarly, European Mountain is a beautiful, mid-sized ornamental tree that yields white-yellow flowers during spring. In the summers, the flowers become small orange and red berries. The berries are bitter and are used for making the Rowan Jelly.


It also attracts birds in a residential setting. The European Mountain Ash has reddish-brown buds. They are densely hairy, not sticky, and full of gray hair. On average, they have a height of 15 meters with a spread of five meters.


They thrive in partial shade or full sun, and their fall color is orange-red. The European Mountain Ash has a medium pollution tolerance and a fast growth rate.



So, this brings us to the end of our Sorbus mountain ash trees’ guide. With this guide, you must have a better understanding of their growing tips, uses, and more. We are sure you will be able to spot mountain ash when you come across it.



Growing the European Mountain Ash


Vanessa Richins Myers

Vanessa Richins Myers

Vanessa Richins Myers is a seasoned horticulturist, writer, and educator with over 10 years of training and experience as a professional horticulturist and gardener. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in horticulture, with an emphasis in landscape design and urban horticulture. She volunteers as a community garden specialist.

Learn more about The Spruce's Editorial Process

Updated on 09/23/21

Reviewed by

Debra LaGattuta

Reviewed by Debra LaGattuta

Debra LaGattuta is a gardening expert with three decades of experience in perennial and flowering plants, container gardening, and raised bed vegetable gardening. She is a Master Gardener and lead gardener in a Plant-A-Row, which is a program that offers thousands of pounds of organically-grown vegetables to local food banks. Debra is a member of The Spruce Gardening and Plant Care Review Board.

Learn more about The Spruce's Review Board

Fact checked by

Nike Orisamolu

Fact checked by Nike Orisamolu

Olanike "Nike" Orisamolu is a fact-checker and digital marketing expert with experience in communications, writing, editing, and content marketing. She was previously a fact-checker for Appen and was a B2B writer and content marketer for Wordpress.

Learn more about The Spruce's Editorial Process

The Spruce / K. Dave

If you'd like to add color to your winter landscape, plant a European Mountain Ash. This tree produces a plethora of red fruits in the summer that will remain on the tree even after the leaves drop in autumn and persist through winter.

This species is not a true ash tree like the European Ash. European Mountain Ash trees have ash-like leaves, but they are members of the rose family; true ash trees (Fraxinus spp.), are members of the olive family.

The European Mountain Ash is native to Western Asia and Europe.

Botanical Name

The botanical name for this member of the Rosaceae family is Sorbus aucuparia. Other well-known members of this family include roses, strawberries, the Prunus genus (which contains apricots, almonds, cherries, nectarines, peaches, and plums, among others), Cotoneaster spp. , raspberries, and blackberries.

Common Names

Common names that might be applied to this tree include European rowan, mountain ash, rowan, and European mountain ash.

Preferred USDA Cold Hardiness Zones

USDA Cold Hardiness Zones 3 through 6 are the recommended zones for this tree. It will not grow well south of USDA Zone 6.

Size and Shape

This tree reaches a height of 20 to 40 feet with an 8 to 20 foot spread as it forms into an narrow, upright specimen with an oval or round crown.


This tree requires full sun at least six to eight hours per day.

Foliage, Flowers, and Fruit

The pinnately compound leaves are arranged alternately on the stem, each one featuring 9 to 15 leaflets. White flowers are produced in May and are borne in cymes (clusters). After the flower show, the tree is covered with clusters of red-orange pome fruits.

Design Tips

Invite birds into your landscape by planting one of these trees; their fruit is a favorite treat and the red berries add much-needed color to a winter garden.

Growing Tips

Perform a soil test to ensure the soil is acidic, in the range of 4.5 to 6.0, which this tree prefers. You can add amendments to acidify the soil if the soil pH is too high. This tree does best in moist, well-drained soils. As the common name suggests, this tree prefers cool mountain climates and dislikes hot and humid summers,

The Spruce / K. Dave

The Spruce / K. Dave

The Spruce / K. Dave

Maintenance and Pruning

Fire blight can be spread by pruning if the conditions are right (very warm). Prune this tree at winter's end during the tree's dormant period.

Pests and Diseases


  • Aphids
  • Apple fruit moth (Argyresthia conjugella)
  • Blister mites
  • Borers
  • Deer
  • Mountain-ash sawfly larvae (Pristiphora geniculata)
  • Scales such as the oystershell scale (Lepidosaphes ulmi)


  • Apple scab (Venturia inaequalis)
  • Botryosphaeria dieback and canker (Botryosphaeria dothidea)
  • Cedar-quince rust (Gymnosporangium clavipes)
  • Cytospora canker (Cytospora spp. )
  • Bacterial fire blight (caused by Erwinia amylovora)
  • Powdery mildew

planting and care, types and varieties photo, reproduction of mountain ash

Mountain ash (Sorbus) is a genus of woody plants of the tribe Apple, which is a representative of the Pink family. According to information taken from various sources, this genus includes 80–100 species. Rowan red or common (Sorbus aucuparia) is a fruit tree and a species of the genus Rowan, it is widely distributed throughout almost the entire territory of Europe, the Caucasus and Asia Minor. This species has an extensive range, which even reaches the Far North. In the mountains, the red rowan grows in the form of shrubs, while they rise to the border of vegetation. The scientific name of the genus "sorbus" comes from the Celtic language, it means "bitter, tart" in translation, this is due to the taste of berries. The name of the species comes from the Latin word, which translates as "bird" and "catch". The fact is that birds like to eat the berries of this plant, so people used them as bait.

Such a tree was part of the culture of the Scandinavians, Slavs and Celts. They believed that the mountain ash had magical powers. So, this plant helped warriors in battles, and also provided protection from witchcraft and from the world of the dead. If you look at the fruit of this plant from below, then it will be similar to one of the very ancient pagan symbols of protection - a five-pointed equilateral star. During the wedding process, the leaves of the rowan tree were placed in the shoes of the spouses. Its wood was used to create travel staves. Such a plant was planted near the house, and if it was destroyed or damaged, then this was an extremely bad omen.


  • 1 Features of the Rowan tree
  • 2 Loyabin planting
  • 3 Breeding for Ryabina
    • 3.1 Diseases and pests
  • 4 Ryabye multiplication
  • 5 types and grades of ryabyan with photo and description
    • 5. 1 Elderberry mountain ash (Sorbus sambucifolia)
    • 5.2 Glogovina mountain ash (Sorbus torminalis)
    • 5.3 Domestic mountain ash (Sorbus domestica) or large-fruited mountain ash (Crimean)
    • 5.4 Rowal Robin (SORBUS ARIA), or Aria, or Ryabina powder
    • 5.5 Hybrid Ryabar (Sorbus X Hybrida)
    • 5.6 Rowal (Red)
  • 6 Redban design
  • 9000 9000 7 properties of ryabyan: Harm and benefits
    • 7.1 Useful properties of mountain ash
    • 7.2 Contraindications

Peculiarities of the mountain ash tree

The mountain ash is a shrub or tree, the height of which does not exceed 12 meters. The shape of the crown is round, on the surface of the red-gray stems there is pubescence. In mature trees, the bark is smooth and glossy, it has a brown-gray or gray-yellow color. Unpaired alternately arranged leaf plates are about 20 centimeters long, they include from 7 to 15 pointed elongated leaves with a serrated edge, their front surface is matte, green, and the wrong side is painted in a lighter shade and has pubescence. In autumn, the foliage changes its color to red and golden hues.

The final lush corymbose inflorescences are about 10 centimeters in diameter, they consist of a large number of white flowers that have an unpleasant aroma. The fruit is a juicy red-orange apple, the diameter of which reaches 10 mm. This tree blooms in May-June. Berries fully ripen in the last weeks of the summer period or the first - in the autumn.

When planting, it should be taken into account that such a culture reacts extremely negatively to smoke and gas content in the air, as well as to waterlogging and stagnant water in the soil.

Rowan tree wood is resilient and hard and very easy to process. In ancient times, it was used to make runes and spindles. The berries of this crop are used to make dyes for fabric.


Watch this video on YouTube

Planting rowan in open ground

Since the rowan tree is quite tall, it is recommended to plant it at the edge of the garden, in this case it will not cause shading of the area. Nutrient soil is best suited (light to medium loam that retains water well), but mountain ash can be grown on less fertile soil. Landing is recommended to be carried out in the spring before the sap flow begins or in the fall - during leaf fall. In order to harvest a good harvest, it is recommended to plant several plants of various varieties at once on the site.

When purchasing seedlings, a thorough inspection of their root system should be carried out, paying attention to the fact that it must be completely healthy and well developed. A developed root system has 2 or 3 branches, which reach a length of more than 0.2 m. It is not recommended to purchase a seedling with dried and weathered roots. Examine the bark, it should not be wrinkled, but rather smooth. Break off a small piece of bark from the plant, if its inner side is brown, then the seedling may be dead. In a normal living plant, it will have a green color. Before planting, the plant should be prepared, for this it is necessary to cut out all injured, dried and disease-damaged stems and roots. If the mountain ash is planted in the fall, then all leaf plates are cut off from its branches, while trying not to injure the buds in the axils.

A distance of 4 to 6 meters should be observed between seedlings, the same distance should be from mountain ash to other trees in the garden. The diameter and depth of the pit can vary from 0.6 to 0.8 m. Before planting, prepare the soil mixture, which should consist of 5 kilograms of topsoil and peat compost, 200 grams of superphosphate, 2-3 shovels of rotted manure and 100 grams of wood ash . Mix everything well. Fill the pit with 1/3 of this soil mixture, after which it must be filled up to half with simple soil. Then 10 liters of water is poured into the pit. Wait until the liquid is completely absorbed into the soil.

The root system of the plant must be dipped in a clay mash, then it is immediately installed in the center of the pit, which is covered with soil from the top layer or the remains of the earth mixture. When the plant is planted, the surface of the soil around it must be compacted, then it is well watered. The tree should be planted 20–30 mm deeper than it was grown in the nursery. After the liquid after watering is completely absorbed into the near-stem circle, its surface must be covered with a layer of mulch (peat, grass, sawdust, humus, hay, straw or other organic material), the thickness of which can vary from 5 to 10 centimeters.

Planting rowan seedlings

Watch this video on YouTube

Caring for rowan

Growing rowan is nothing unusual. For normal growth and development of a plant, it is necessary to water it in a timely manner, weed it, loosen the soil surface, cut, feed and carry out treatments in the fight against pests and diseases.

Such a tree needs watering only during a long drought. It should be taken into account that the plant needs mandatory watering at the very beginning of the growing season and after planting in open soil, and another 15–20 days before the crop is harvested, and 2–3 weeks after that. Along the perimeter of the near-stem circle, it is recommended to make grooves into which water flows during irrigation. From 20 to 30 liters of water is taken per 1 tree for one irrigation, while the final volume of liquid used depends on the condition and composition of the soil, as well as on the age of the viburnum itself.

The surface of the tree circle must be loosened at the beginning of the spring period, during the summer this procedure is carried out 2 to 3 times. And the surface of the near-stem circle must be loosened after the entire crop has been harvested. The easiest way to loosen the soil is the next day after rain or watering. During loosening, you need to pull out all the weeds. When the trunk circle is loosened, its surface must be covered again with a layer of mulch.

In order for mountain ash to be more productive, it will need systemic top dressing. Starting from the third year of growth, humus or compost is introduced into the soil under the plant - from 5 to 8 kilograms and ammonium nitrate - 50 grams. At the beginning of June, 1 bucket of a solution of bird droppings (1:10) or mullein (1:5) should be poured under a tree. Instead of organic fertilizer, you can use Agrolife solution. In the last summer weeks, 100 grams of superphosphate and 500 milligrams of wood ash must be added to the trunk circle.

Pruning is carried out at the very beginning of the spring period before the awakening of the kidneys. It is necessary to cut out all the dried, diseased and growing shoots growing inside the crown, as well as those that depart at a right angle. Those varieties that bear fruit on last year's stems will need thinning and slight shortening of the branches. If fruiting is observed on various types of fruit formations, then such trees will need periodic thinning and rejuvenation of the ringlet, as well as shortening of the skeletal branches.

The most important goal of rowan pruning is to better and evenly illuminate its crown, which has a very positive effect on the plant's yield. Due to the fact that such a tree has a pyramidal crown shape, the branches grow at an acute angle to the trunk, which makes them more fragile. When forming skeletal branches, it is necessary to try to make sure that they are brought out at an obtuse or right angle.

If the plant has a weak growth, then it will need anti-aging pruning. It is made on two-year-old or three-year-old wood, as a result of which the growth of new shoots is activated.

Diseases and pests

In May or June, you need to carefully examine the mountain ash, because it is at this time that the first symptoms of a disease or damage by harmful insects may appear. This plant is susceptible to the following diseases: anthracnose, septoria, brown and gray spotting, powdery mildew, monoliosis, scab, rust, necrosis (black, nectrium and cytosporous) and viral ring mosaic. If the plant was planted completely healthy, while planting and caring for it followed all the rules of agricultural technology for this crop, then the mountain ash may never get sick at all. The fact is that only weakened trees are susceptible to diseases. However, in spite of everything, it is necessary to periodically examine the mountain ash in order to start treatment in a timely manner, if necessary.

Any type of necrosis, as well as mosaic, are incurable diseases. In this regard, it is necessary to try so that the tree does not get sick with them at all, and for this it is necessary to carry out a number of preventive measures. It is necessary to take a very responsible approach to the choice of planting material, the site will need pre-sowing preparation, the purpose of which is to destroy pathogens. Also, when pests appear that are carriers of viruses, it is necessary to get rid of them as soon as possible, and it is also very important that the trunk circle is always clean. Do not forget to make periodic inspections of mountain ash, because any disease is easier to cure at the initial stage of development.

Mountain ash is affected by the same diseases as other crops of the Rose family (apple, plum, pear). At the same time, the symptoms of diseases and methods of treatment are the same for them.

Mountain ash can host about 60 species of mites and other harmful insects that injure the stems, berries, seeds, leaf blades, flowers and buds of the tree. Most of these pests can settle on various fruit crops of the Rosaceae family. Most often on a mountain ash tree settle:

  1. Weevils . To destroy them, Karbofos is used.
  2. Bark beetles . To get rid of them, the plant should be sprayed with Confidor, Aktara and Lepidocide.
  3. Moths . To exterminate these pests, Karbofos, Chlorophos or Cyanox are used.
  4. Rowan gall mites . When they appear, the tree is sprayed with colloidal sulfur.
  5. Rowan moths . They are destroyed by Chlorophos.
  6. Green apple aphid . To destroy it, Decis or Actellik is used.
  7. Shields . You can get rid of them by spraying mountain ash with 30 plus.
  8. Apple fruit sawflies . In order to exterminate them, use an infusion of white mustard. To prepare it, you need to combine 1 liter of water and 10 grams of mustard powder, everything is mixed and left for 24 hours. Before use, the infusion should be diluted with water in a ratio of 1:5.

In order to prevent pests, the tree must be sprayed on the foliage before the sap flow begins, for this, a solution of copper sulphate is used (100 grams per 1 bucket of water). Spraying the mountain ash and the surface of the near-stem circle with Nitrafen, which is carried out in the spring, is also quite effective. Also, for the purpose of prevention in the fall, it is imperative to rake all the foliage from the site and destroy it, while the soil in the trunk circles is dug up.

Rowan propagation

Vegetative and generative (seed) methods are used to propagate red ash. From seeds, species mountain ash is most often grown. Seeds are sown in autumn. To begin with, they are taken out of the fruit and washed from the remnants of the pulp, then they need to be deepened into the soil by 0.5–1 cm. From above, the surface of the crops should be covered with a layer of mulch (dried fallen leaves). If sowing seeds is scheduled for spring, then they will need stratification. To do this, they are combined with coarse sand in a ratio (1: 3), then the mixture must be kept at room temperature for 4–8 weeks, and then removed for 3–4 months on a refrigerator shelf intended for vegetables. The seedlings that appear need systematic watering and weeding, as well as loosening the soil surface around them. Seedlings are transplanted into shkolka in autumn. A tree grown in a generative way begins to bear fruit in 4–5 years.

For propagation of valuable varietal mountain ash, vegetative methods are used, for example: green and lignified cuttings, grafting, layering and shoots. As a stock for grafting a varietal cutting, it is recommended to take a seedling of Nevezhinsky, ordinary or Mooravian mountain ash grown from seed. Vaccination should be carried out in the first days of April, when sap flow begins, as well as in July or August. It is necessary to remove the bandage from the vaccination site after 20 days. The top of the stock should be trimmed, leaving a spike. It is to this thorn that you need to make a garter of a growing varietal shoot.

If the mountain ash is rooted, then shoots can be used to propagate it. Green cuttings do not root very well, on average 4.5–6 cuttings out of 10. And lignified cuttings root even worse than green ones.

Rowan red (common)

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Types and varieties of mountain ash with photos and descriptions

Gardeners cultivate most types of mountain ash. Most of these species are fruit, but there are also ornamental ones.

Elderberry mountain ash (Sorbus sambucifolia)

Under natural conditions, this species is found in Japan and the Khabarovsk Territory, as well as in Sakhalin, Kamchatka and the Kuril Islands. This spectacular shrub reaches a height of 250 cm. A not very dense crown can be round or ovoid. Straight bare stems of dark brown color have a bluish bloom on the surface, gray branches with well-defined lenticels. Unpaired leaf blades reach 18 centimeters in length and have lanceolate stipules. The composition of the leaf plates includes from 7 to 15 sharply serrated oval-shaped leaves and dark green color, they are glossy and almost naked, located on petioles of light red color. Complex corymbose inflorescences consist of flowers having a diameter of about 15 mm and a white or pale red color. On the surface of the branches and pedicels there is a pubescence of a light red color. Edible berries are juicy, rich red in color and spherical in shape, they have a fifteen-millimeter diameter and a sweet and sour taste. Also, they do not have bitterness and have a very pleasant smell. The fruits may not fall from the branches until the onset of the spring period. This plant is undemanding to the soil, and is resistant to drought and frost.

Glogovina mountain ash (Sorbus torminalis), or medicinal bereka

In the wild, this species can be found in the Crimea, Western Europe, the Caucasus, Southwestern Ukraine and Asia Minor. Such mountain ash grows not in very large groups or singly. In height, such a tree can reach 25 meters. Its trunk is covered with dark gray bark, which has longitudinal cracks. On young shoots, the bark is olive in color. Simple broadly ovate leaf plates reach 18 centimeters in length, heart-shaped and rounded at the base, they are also pointed, at the top there are from 3 to 5 lobes. The front surface of the leaves is dark green glossy, and the wrong side is hairy-pubescent. In autumn, the color of the foliage changes to yellow or orange. Loose corymbose inflorescences, reaching a diameter of 8 centimeters, consist of small (about 10 mm in diameter) white flowers. Rounded berries, reaching a diameter of 1.8 cm, have a pale red or orange color, which gradually changes to brown. The floury pulp has a sweet-sour taste. This species is highly frost tolerant but not drought tolerant. There are 2 decorative shapes:

  • hairy;
  • with pinnately dissected leaf blades.

Sorbus domestica, or large-fruited mountain ash (Crimean)

Under natural conditions, this species occurs in the southern part of Western Europe and in the Crimea, it prefers to grow in the undergrowth of broad-leaved forests singly or in groups. This plant is characterized by slow growth and reaches a height of 15 meters. The shape of the crown is broadly pyramidal or spherical. The bark covering the trunk is already fissured in a young plant. But the stems are almost bare, smooth and glossy. The composition of unpaired complex leaf plates, reaching a length of 18 centimeters, includes smooth glossy sharp-serrate lanceolate leaves, painted green and having a length of about 50 mm. Broadly pyramidal branched felt-pubescent inflorescences, having a diameter of about 10 centimeters, consist of flowers reaching 15 mm in diameter and painted white or pale pink. Oblong-ovate or pear-shaped berries, up to 30 mm in diameter, can be yellow-green, red or brown, have a mealy, fragrant, slightly sweet astringent pulp, which includes many stony cells. Such a plant is resistant to pests, drought and frost. There are 2 shapes:

  • pear-shaped;
  • apple-shaped.

Round-leaved mountain ash (Sorbus aria), or aria, or powdery mountain ash

In nature, this species is found in the Carpathians and in the mountains of Central and Southern Europe. The height of such a vigorous tree is about 12 meters. The shape of the crown is broad-pyramidal. The trunk is covered with brown-red or brownish bark, on the surface of the stems there is a felt pubescence. Leathery whole leaf plates of a round-elliptical shape along the edge are sharp-double-serrate. During opening, the foliage is white-felt, then the front surface of the leaves turns green. In autumn, the color of the foliage changes to various shades of bronze, because of this, the mountain ash begins to look like an alder. Shields, reaching 8 centimeters in diameter, consist of white flowers. Edible berries of spherical shape in diameter reach 15 mm, they are painted in red-orange or pink-orange color. Sweet and sour mealy pulp is not as tasty as sweet-fruited varieties. Cultivated since 1880. There are several garden forms:

  1. Decayne . Flowers and leaf plates of this form are larger.
  2. Edible . The shape of the leaf plates is elliptical or oblong. The berries of such a plant are somewhat larger than those of the main species.
  3. Chrysophyll . Throughout the season, the foliage is painted in a pale yellow color. In autumn it becomes oily yellow.
  4. Manifika . During opening, the leaf plates are snow-white; in the summer, their front surface turns green. In autumn, their color changes to bronze. Red berries on the surface have pubescence in the form of a white pile.
  5. Majestic . The height of this plant is about 15 meters. It does not form berries.

Hybrid rowan (Sorbus x hybrida)

This plant is a natural hybrid of the intermediate rowan and the red rowan. Under natural conditions, this species can be found in Northern Europe. Complex leaf plates combine simple pinnate and lobed leaves. The front surface of the foliage is green and bare, and the wrong side has a pale gray or whitish pubescence. Gardeners grow only one more hybrid - the Thuringian variety, which was obtained by crossing round-leaved mountain ash and red mountain ash. In this tree, compared to the mountain ash, the hybrid blades on the leaf plates are not cut so much, while they are more blunt and wider.

Common mountain ash (red)

A detailed description of this species can be found at the beginning of the article. It has a large number of decorative forms that differ in berry color, crown shape and foliage color, for example: Burka, liqueur, pomegranate, Michurin dessert, Russian, pyramidal, weeping, Beisner, Nevezhinskaya, Moravian, or sweet, Fifeana, etc. All these forms retain their spectacular appearance throughout the growing season. Particular attention should be paid to the following forms:

  1. Nevezhinskaya . Outwardly, this variety and the main species are very similar. These plants are distinguished by the fact that the Nevezhinsky mountain ash berries do not have bitterness and astringency, even when they are not ripe, when the main species can eat fruits only after the first frosts have passed.
  2. Moravian rowan or sweet . Found naturally in the Sudetenland. The leaf plates are more openwork compared to other varieties, and the flowering of such mountain ash begins a little later. The composition of the inflorescences can sometimes include about 150 flowers. Red scarlet berries have juicy orange flesh and a sweet-sour taste.
  3. Liqueur . This variety was born thanks to Michurin, for this he crossed chokeberry and red mountain ash. The color of the berries is black-purple. This rowan has a very high frost resistance.
  4. Garnet . The variety was born as a result of crossing large-fruited hawthorn and red mountain ash in 1925. The height of such a tree is about 400 cm. Smooth glossy simple leaf plates are about 17 centimeters long. In the upper part, the leaves are entire, elliptical or ovoid in shape, and in the lower part, pinnately dissected. Burgundy sweet-sour berries have a size equal to cherries. The species has a very high frost resistance.
  5. Burka . She was born in 1918 by crossing red ashberry and alpine ashberry. The dark green, simple leaf blades are pinnately dissected and slightly hairy. Oblong brown-red berries are medium in size. Rowan remains very beautiful throughout the season.
  6. Michurinskaya dessert shop . This is a hybrid between rowan liquor and German medlar. The height of the tree is only 300 cm, the crown is wide. Unpaired compound leaf blades reach 18 centimeters in length, they consist of 6 or 7 pairs of greenish leaves, the underside of which is slightly pubescent. Medium-sized dark red berries are very similar in shape to medlar fruits. The tree has a high decorative effect and frost resistance.

Gardeners also grow such varieties of mountain ash as: mixed, intermediate, or Swedish, alder-leaved, Köhne, Vilmorena, Amur and some others. The plant is medium. The berries are juicy and have a taste similar to cranberries.

  • Vefed . The sweet-fruited variety is characterized by high productivity and frost resistance. The purpose of this variety is table and dessert. Fruits of pink-yellow color are very showy.
  • Solar . The variety is consistently fruitful. Intense orange berries with a red blush are very tasty and fresh, and grated with granulated sugar.
  • Sorbinka . The grade differs in productivity and frost resistance. The berries are red and large and can be eaten fresh or used for processing.
  • Also very popular are red rowan varieties such as: Kirsten Pink, Red Tip, Carpet of Gold, White Max, Shimi Glow, Leonard Springer, Fastigiata, Integerrima, Jermyns, Titan, etc.

    Rowan tree in landscape design

    Rowan tree in landscape design can play a secondary or major role. Pavilions and arches are decorated with weeping rowan, it is also planted on a lawn or edge away from other trees, as a solo plant.

    This plant looks great in a group with other shrubs and trees, such as pigtail, spirea, snowberry or barberry. Also, mountain ash goes well with coniferous crops (thuja, pine, fir or spruce). Especially in autumn, when motley mountain ash looks very impressive against a bluish or green background of coniferous trees.

    This plant can also be planted together with deciduous trees: linden, black poplar, maple, ash and white willow. Most types of mountain ash are able to emphasize the showiness of viburnum, mountain ash, honeysuckle and wrinkled rose. From shrubby mountain ash, you can create a hedge, against which perennial flowers will look great. When choosing a place for planting such a crop, one should not forget that it reacts extremely negatively to the gassed and smoky air that is inherent in cities.

    Rowan trees in the garden. Survey of species and varieties.

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    Properties of mountain ash: harm and benefits

    Useful properties of mountain ash

    Red rowan berries contain a lot of vitamin C, it contains even more than lemons. The berries also contain vitamins P, B2, PP, K and E, as well as provitamin A, glycosides, amino acids, pectins, bitterness, tannins, organic acids (succinic, citric and malic), flavonoids, iodine, potassium, magnesium, iron , copper, manganese, zinc, alcohols, essential oil and phytoncides. Such berries are distinguished by a diaphoretic, hemostatic, choleretic and diuretic effect. In Norway, such a plant is used as a wound healing and decongestant, in Hungary it is used to treat dysentery, in Bulgaria stones are removed from the kidneys with the help of berries.

    Since berries contain a lot of vitamins, they are used to improve the condition of the body in case of diabetes mellitus, kidney and liver diseases, anemia, hemorrhoids, diseases of the digestive system, especially in gastritis, colitis and peptic ulcer.

    Rowan juice stimulates appetite, so it is recommended to use it for rheumatic pains, exhaustion, kidney and bladder stones. This juice has the ability to eliminate swelling, normalize metabolism, lower blood cholesterol levels, stop bleeding and has an antimicrobial effect. The juice is also indicated for use in gout, atherosclerosis, asthenia, capillary fragility, hypertension, arrhythmia, bleeding and malignant tumors, as well as carbon monoxide poisoning.

    The flowers, bark, leaves and berries of the rowan tree have healing properties. Hypertension is treated with a decoction of the bark, with scurvy it is recommended to take the drug from the foliage, since they contain a lot of vitamin C (more than in berries). Preparations from flowers and berries are used for diseases of the digestive tract, metabolic disorders and colds.

    This plant can also be used externally for wounds, various inflammations, burns and warts.

    In the confectionery industry, rowan berries are used as raw materials, which are a multivitamin agent. They are used for the production of sweets, liqueurs, vodka, liqueurs and liqueurs, marmalade, marmalade, jelly, marshmallows, jams and soft drinks.

    A rich decoction of rowan berries is used in veterinary medicine for the treatment of pulmonary diseases in animals.

    To improve health in the morning, it is recommended to drink a drink made from mountain ash, which has tonic properties. In the evening, in a thermos with a volume of 3 liters, you need to pour one large spoonful of fresh or dried berries of mountain ash, barberry and wild rose. It is filled with freshly boiled water and tightly closed. This tea should be drunk from morning until lunch, then boiling water is poured into the thermos again, they wait until the drink is infused, and drink again. When the drink prepared in the second drink is over, take out the berries, crush them well and put them back in a thermos filled with freshly boiled water. You can use one serving of berries 3 times.


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    Rowan berries should not be consumed by people who have had a heart attack or stroke, as well as those with coronary heart disease and increased blood clotting. Also, they are not recommended for people with high acidity of the stomach.

    Rowan-sorbus: description, growing conditions and care

    Rowan - Sorbus

    Rowan is one of the most beautiful and, moreover, diverse trees of the temperate zone of the Northern Hemisphere. They are unpretentious, fast growing and, what is very important, organically fit into any landscape. The rowan genus is extensive and includes more than 100 species. These are deciduous trees or shrubs with a variety of leaf shapes, in spring they delight with long flowering, in summer with an openwork crown, in autumn with yellow-purple foliage and colorful fruiting. It is no coincidence that rowan is a favorite folklore character among many peoples.

    In North-East Asia, Northern Manchuria, in the southern territories of the Far East, Amur mountain ash (S.amurensis) grows alone or in small groups - a low, about 4-6 m tree with an even straight trunk.

    Leaves are compound, pinnate, 20-22 cm long. Creamy-white flowers about 1 cm in diameter are collected in large corymbose inflorescences. Blooms from late May to the second decade of June. The fruits are bright, orange-red, round, about 1 cm in diameter, with a pronounced smell of bitter almonds; ripen in the second half of August. Mountain ash grows moderately fast; unpretentious; winter hardiness is high. Zone 3.

    In the mountainous areas of Central and Southern Europe, in the Carpathians, the mountain ash aria, or round-leaved, or powdery (S.aria) lives.

    This light-loving species settles singly on well-lit rocks, grows in the form of a wide-pyramidal tree 6-8 m high. Rowan foliage sharply distinguishes it from other members of the genus. They are whole, relatively large, up to 14-15 cm in length, round-elliptical in shape, leathery, when blooming, strongly pubescent on both sides, as if sprinkled with flour, hence the name of the species. In summer, the upper side of the leaf blade practically loses its pubescence and becomes dark green, while the lower side remains the same; in autumn, the foliage turns bronze. In general, the tree appears silvery, especially in windy conditions. Flowers are white, large, about 1.5 cm across, collected in corymbose inflorescences. Flowering in the first decade of June for 10-12 days. The fruits ripen in the second half of September; they are spherical, large, about 1.5 cm in diameter, orange-red, edible, devoid of bitterness. The species grows moderately fast; stable; photophilous, does not tolerate even a slight shading; undemanding to soils, but prefers slightly alkaline ones; winter-hardy. Zone 3. Has several garden forms.

    “Lutescens” (“Lutescens”) is a beautiful tree with a dense conical crown; height of an adult plant is 8-10 m. In summer, the leaves are dark green above and pubescent below; turn yellow-orange in autumn. Flowering and fruiting at the usual time. Rowan grows slowly; winter-hardy. Zone 4.

    “Magnifica” (“Magnifica”) is a tree with a slender conical or ovoid crown, reaching 8-10 m in height.

    When blooming, the leaves appear snow-white due to abundant pubescence; young shoots are also covered with it. In summer, the upper side of the leaf turns green, the lower side does not change. In autumn, the foliage turns a spectacular bronze color. It blooms and bears fruit at the same time as the original species, but not abundantly. The tree grows slowly; prefers well fertilized soils; winter-hardy. Zone 4.

    In the East Asian region, in the Khabarovsk Territory, in Kamchatka, the Kuriles, Sakhalin, and Japan, thickets of mountain ash (S.sambucifolia) are found in the undergrowth. This is a relatively low, about 2.5 m shrub with a rounded through crown. The leaves are large, up to 18 cm long, pinnate, dark green, shiny. The flowers are creamy white, sometimes with a slight reddish tint, about 1.5 cm in diameter, collected in large corymbose inflorescences. Blooms in the last decade of May. The fruits are spherical, bright red, about 1.5 cm in diameter, very juicy, sweetish-sour, devoid of bitterness, with a pleasant aroma, ripen at the end of August. The plant grows moderately fast, shade-tolerant, unpretentious to soil conditions, drought-resistant, poorly transplanted, winter-hardy. Zone 4.

    China is the birthplace of the most interesting species from the decorative point of view - Vilmorin mountain ash (S.vilmorini). This is a low, about 5-6 m slender tree with a rounded openwork crown.

    It is distinguished by large white-pink flowers, collected in a corymb, and edible, without bitterness, mother-of-pearl-pink fruits. Winter hardiness is good. Zone 4.

    Throughout southwestern Ukraine, in the Crimea, in the Caucasus, in the countries of Western Europe and in Asia Minor, the rowan glogovina, or Bereka medicinal (S. torminalis), lives. This is a large, 22-25 m high tree with a broad pyramidal or slightly flattened crown. The leaves are ovoid, large (18 cm long), finely toothed, the upper side of the leaf blade is dark green, the lower side is pubescent. Foliage turns yellow-orange or fiery red in autumn. White flowers with a diameter of 1 cm are collected in medium-sized (8 cm in diameter), but numerous corymbose inflorescences; flowering occurs in the first decade of June. The fruits ripen by mid-October; they are very large, 1.8-2.0 cm in diameter, orange or red at first, turning brown later; pulp mealy, with stony cells, sweet and sour. Mountain ash is demanding on the nutritional composition of the soil, grows well on moderately moist loams, is shade-tolerant, but not winter-hardy enough; in areas with low winter temperatures it usually grows as a tall shrub. Zone 5A.

    In the forest regions of the Central China, an elegant mountain ash of Köhn is found ( S . Koehneana )-low, not more than 2-3 m in a height, a slender tree with a diameter of about 2 m.

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    The leaves are large, pinnate, dark green, bronze-green in autumn. The flowers are white, collected in a corymbose inflorescence, appear in mid-June, and already in August the bush is covered with a mass of dull white medium-sized fruits; they are devoid of bitterness, slightly sour in taste. The tree looks unusually colorful at this time. Rowan Köhne prefers sunny places, grows well on nutritious, moderately moist soils. Grows fast; winter-hardy. Zone 4.

    In the vast territories of the European part of Russia, in Siberia, the Far East, the well-known mountain ash (S.aucuparia) grows well. It can be found on the edges of the forest, and along forest glades and river banks; grows, as a rule, singly. This is a relatively small tree, 10-12 m tall, often multi-stemmed, with pinnate leaves; they are dark green above, slightly pubescent below; turn red-orange in autumn. Flowers up to 1 cm in diameter are collected in large corymbose inflorescences; flowering occurs in late May - early June. The fruits are spherical, orange-red. The culture is stable, tolerates slight shading, is undemanding to the soil, but develops better on nutritious loose soils. Does not tolerate high standing groundwater. Grows moderately fast, winter-hardy. Zone 3.

    Common mountain ash is rarely used in garden design today, but it has many hybrid forms that differ in crown size and shape, fruit color and taste, and other characteristics. These plants outperform the parent in decorativeness, while inheriting good resistance to low temperatures.

    “Asplenifolia” (“Asplenifolia”) is a large tree 8-10 m high with an oval crown. The dark green leaves are strongly dissected, this gives the tree an extraordinary lightness, delicacy. Autumn color is yellow-orange-red. Blooms normally. The fruits are edible. The tree grows moderately fast; unpretentious; winter hardiness is high.

    “Edulis” (“Edulis”) – tree 10-12 m high; at a young age, the crown is narrowly pyramidal, over the years it becomes more squat, pyramidal or ovoid.

    White flowers in very large inflorescences. The fruits are round, very large, scarlet red with juicy sweet and sour pulp. Ripen in August. Grows slowly; unpretentious.

    "Fastigiata" ("Fastigiata") - differs from the original species in moderately long, slightly branched shoots directed vertically upwards.

    As a result, a narrow columnar crown with a diameter of no more than 2.5 m is formed. Flowering and fruiting occur at the usual time.

    “Laciniata” (“Laciniata”) is a low, about 6-7 m tree or tall multi-stemmed shrub with a beautiful openwork crown.

    Leaves are dark green, much lighter underneath, turning orange-yellow in autumn; are distinguished by a strongly pronounced dissection of the foliage, which gives the crown a through.

    “Pendula” (“Pendula”) is a form grafted onto a trunk, the height of which depends on the height of the tree. Skeletal branches are beautifully curving, drooping, which gives the plant a weeping appearance. Blooms at the usual time for the species; fruits are edible. The form grows moderately fast; unpretentious.

    “Sheerwater Seedling” (“Sheerwater Seedling”) - a slender tree 6-8 m high with a symmetrical, regular crown; at a young age, it is dense cone-shaped, later it becomes more transparent wide-conical. The leaves are larger than the species, shiny, leathery greyish-green, yellow-orange in autumn. Flowering is characterized by an abundance of large white flowers collected in corymbose inflorescences. The fruits are also larger than those of the natural species, ripen already in late July - early August; they look spectacular against the background of grayish foliage. The tree grows moderately fast; unpretentious, but develops better on nutritious soil.

    In the forests of Primorsky Krai, Japan, China, Korea grows mountain ash (S.ainifolia) - a large, tall tree.

    The height of an adult tree in nature reaches 15-18 m; the crown is beautiful, narrow pyramidal. The leaves are simple, broadly oval, finely serrated, with pronounced venation, reminiscent of alder leaves, hence the specific name of the tree. When unfolded, the foliage is light green with a slight bronze tint, then becomes dark green, autumn color is bright, orange-red. It blooms in late May with pure white flowers collected in small corymbose inflorescences. Bright red with a bluish bloom, spherical fruits, reminiscent of the fruits of mountain ash, although edible, but dry and hard. The tree is undemanding to the nutritional composition of the soil; it can grow on almost any garden soil; drought-resistant; shade-tolerant; frost resistance is high. Zone 3.

    In the north of Europe, especially in Scandinavia, the intermediate mountain ash (S. intermedia) is widespread, which is often called Swedish or Scandinavian mountain ash in the place of its main distribution.

    This is a beautiful slender tree, reaching 12-15 m in height, with a regular oval crown. The leaves are large (10-12 cm long), entire, oblong-ovate, dark green above, pronouncedly pubescent below, due to which they appear silvery. The flowers are white, slightly more than 1 cm in diameter, collected in large, pubescent corymbose inflorescences. Flowering begins at the end of May and lasts until the second decade of June. The fruits ripen in mid-September; they are spherical, about 1 cm in diameter, orange-red, edible. Mountain ash grows moderately fast; undemanding to soils; drought-resistant; winter hardiness is high. Zone 3. This species has given rise to several interesting garden forms.

    “Brouwers” ​​(“Brouwers”) is a low (no more than 8-9 m in height) tree with a more spreading crown with a diameter of about 5-6 m. Winter hardiness is high. Zone 3.

    'Joseph Rock' is a well known and popular variety. The tree is low, no more than 7-8 m in height with a compact pyramidal or ovoid crown. The leaves are larger than those of the species, up to 15 cm long, bright green. In autumn they turn orange-red with a purple hue. The color of the fruits is unusual: at first they are creamy yellow, as they ripen they darken and become amber yellow; they are edible, sweet and sour. The variety is unpretentious to soils, but develops better on nutrient soils; drought-resistant; frost-resistant. Zone 3.

    On Sakhalin, the Kuriles, in Japan, Korea, in mixed and deciduous forests, in illuminated areas, mixed mountain ash (S.commixta) is found. The plant often rises low in the mountains, rarely settles in mountain valleys.

    Mixed mountain ash is a low, about 4-6 m high tree, often forming two or three trunks, with a dense crown. The leaves are pinnate, glossy, reddish-green when unfolded in spring, then dark green, turning deep red in autumn. Blooms at the end of May; flowers are white, small, no more than 1 cm in diameter, collected in dense, large, up to 15 cm across inflorescences. The fruits ripen in early September; they are painted bright red and taste bitter; hang on branches for a long time, as birds do not eat them.

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