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American Cranberry Bush

Common Name: American Cranberry Bush, Highbush Cranberry

Scientific Name: Viburnum trilobum

Bartram's nursery in Philadelphia listed the American cranberry bush for sale in 1783.1 In 1791,Thomas Jefferson ordered "bush cranberries. All you have" from the William Prince Nursery on Long Island, New York.2

The cranberry bush is native from New Brunswick and British Columbia to New York, Michigan, South Dakota, and Oregon. Once listed also as V. americanum, it is similar to the European cranberry bush in form. V. trilobum is a hardy, deciduous, spring-flowering North American shrub that bears flattened, lace-cap like clusters of white flowers surrounded by flat, white sterile florets with lustrous, dark green leaves that turn yellow to red in fall.  The red fruits, which persist through the winter, can be used in preserves.

- Text from Thomas Jefferson Center for Historic Plants Information Sheet

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