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US horticulturist modified black chokeberry

Mark Brand, a professor of horticulture in UConn’s College of Agriculture, Health, and Natural Resources, has patented two modified forms of black chokeberry that make the plant more useful for landscaping purposes.

Brand has created a dense, compact form of the native North American shrub black chokeberry (aronia melanocarpa) called UC165. UC165 has been licensed to the Proven Winners program and is sold with the trade name of Low Scape Mound black chokeberry.

This modified strain is much more desirable as an ornamental landscaping shrub because it is smaller, has more abundant clusters of white flowers, edible black fruit, small glossy green leaves, and turns beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and red in autumn. These features make the new form a much more aesthetically pleasing version of the traditional plant that is also easier to manage with regard to spatial considerations.

Both new chokeberry cultivars are dramatically different than any chokeberries previously available for landscaping. Their unique growth forms, excellent landscape adaptability, and multi-season ornamental characteristics should make both plants favourites’ with the nursery industry, landscapers, and homeowners, says Brand. reports that the new UConn chokeberries will be available in garden centres for spring 2018.

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