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Farkleberry

Vaccinium arboreum

Other common name(s):

Sparkleberry, Tree Sparkleberry, Winter Huckleberry, Huckleberry

Family:

Ericaceae (Heath Family)

Plant Ecoregion Distribution Map

East Central Texas Plains, Gulf Coast Prairies and Marshes, Texas Blackland Prairies, Western Gulf Coastal Plain
Bastrop Lost Pines, Floodplains and Low Terraces2, Northern Post Oak Savanna, Northern Prairie Outliers, San Antonio Prairie, Southern Post Oak Savanna
Coastal Sand Plain, Northern Humid Gulf Coastal Prairies, Texas-Louisiana Coastal Marshes
Southern Blackland Prairie
Flatwoods, Floodplains and Low Terraces3, Pleistocene Fluvial Terraces, Red River Bottomlands, Southern Tertiary Uplands, Tertiary Uplands

Plant Characteristics

Growth Form

Tree

Height

12
to
15
ft.

Spread

10
to
12
ft.

Leaf Retention

Semi Evergreen

Lifespan

Perennial

Habitat and Care Requirements

Soil Type(s)

Sand, Loam, Acid, Well Drained, Moist

Light Requirement

Part Shade

Water Requirement

Medium

Native Habitat

Woodland, Wetland or Riparian

Bloom and Attraction

Bloom Color

White

Bloom Season

Spring

Seasonal Interest

Fruit, Fall Color, Pollen, Larval Host

Wildlife Benefit

Butterflies, Birds, Small Mammals, Bees

Maintenance

Drought tolerant. Attractive, understory tree. The leaves may hang on through the winter if the plant is protected from gusty winds. The shrub is susceptible to chlorosis in high alkaline sites. Propagation: Seed, Softwood cuttings.

Comments

Blooms March-June. Spreading shrub or small tree with exfoliating, reddish bark. Fragrant white urn-shaped flowers. Small blue fruits. Oval leaves that turn red in the fall. Attracts bees and butterflies. Attracts birds and small mammals. Larval host: Henry’s Elfin Butterfly, Striped Hairstreak.
Previous Scientific Name(s): Synonym/s: Batodendron andrachniforme, Batodendron arboreum, Vaccinium arboreum var. glaucescens

References

1) Griffith, Bryce, Omernick & Rodgers (2007). Ecoregions of Texas. 2) Miller, George O., Landscaping with Native Plants of Texas 2nd Ed., 2013, pg 48. 3) Wasowski and Wasowski, Native Texas Plants Landscaping Region by Region, 1991, pg. 304, 305. 4) https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=VAAR. 5) https://portal.torcherbaria.org/portal/taxa/index.php?taxon=Vaccinium+arboreum&formsubmit=Search+Terms. 6) http://bonap.net/TDC/Image/Map?taxonType=Species&taxonId=9872&locationType=County&mapType=Normal, 7) https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=23580#null, 8) https://plants.ces.ncsu.edu/plants/vaccinium-arboreum/