Description: Hardy, deciduous, western North American shrub; Tiny pink blossoms in late spring followed by large white berries, which persist through the winter and are especially striking after the leaves drop
Size: Grows 4 to 6 feet high and wide
Cultural Information: Prefers full sun to part shade; fertile, well-drained soil
USDA Zones: 3 through 7
Historical Notes:Thomas Jefferson sent seed of the snowberry, brought back from the Lewis and Clark Expedition, to his nurseryman friend Bernard McMahon. In 1812 McMahon sent Jefferson young plants, saying "This is a beautiful shrub brought by Captain Lewis from the River Columbia; the flower is small but neat, the berries hang in large clusters and are of a snow-white colour, and continue on the shrub, retaining their beauty all the winter, especially if kept in a greenhouse-€¦I have given it the trivial English name of Snowberry-bush." Jefferson promised the shrub to his Parisian friend, Madame de Tessé, and plants were sent to General John Hartwell Cocke, of Bremo Plantation on the James River in March 1817. Monticello was one of the first American gardens where this shrub was grown and it became a popular garden novelty in England after it was first exported in 1817.