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Bunchberry

( Cornus canadensis )

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Bunchberry
Canada Bunchberry
Dwarf Dogwood
Crackerberry
Dwarf Cornel
Cornaceae
Cornus
Cornus canadensis
Linnaeus
BC, AB, SK, MB, ON, QC, NB, PE, NS, NL, NL, YT, NT, NU
Chamaepericlymenum canadense
Cornus unalaschkensis
Characteristics

Ground Cover

Deciduous

2

Sun, Partial Shade, Deciduous Shade (Spring Sun)

Clay, Sand, Loam, Humus Enriched

Acidophile

Normal, Moist

No

No

No

No
Habitat Considerations

Taiga Shield, Boreal Shield, Atlantic Maritime, Mixedwood Plains, Boreal Plains, Prairies, Taiga Cordillera, Boreal Cordillera, Pacific Maritime, Montane Cordillera, Hudson Plains

Forest, Woodland, Swamp/Marsh, Bog/Fen

Woodland
Design Considerations

7 cm

20 cm

May - Sep

White/Cream|Green/Brown

Yes

Yes

Red

No

No

No

No

No

No

No

Other Showy Insects

No
Conservation Status

Yes


Interesting Tidbits

This is the only member of the Cornus family that is not a tree or a shrub. It makes excellent ground cover in moist woodland gardens. It can withstand nutrient poor or rich soil. Damp, cool, acid soil or peat moss. In late summer, dense clusters of small, red berries replace the flowers. Some people enjoy these juicy fruits, with their crunchy little seeds, but others consider them mealy and tasteless. Bunch berries can be eaten as a trail nibble or added to puddings, preserves and sauces. (Kershaw) The fruits are rich in pectin which is a capillary tonic, anti inflammatory, antispasmodic and hypotensive. Pectin also inhibits carcinogenesis and protects against radiation. (Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S.) Habitat Information: Many forest types, moist, and acid bogs. (University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point Freckmann Herbarium) Garden Uses: Although it looks like a perennial, this plant is actually a ground spreading shrub. In natural settings bunch berry is not as prolific as in the garden. When it likes where it is, it can spread quite rapidly. It Is a great shade loving ground cover as a showy alternative to grass, can be planted next to paths, is resistant to some foot traffic, and when naturalized can help deter weeds. (Evergreen). Insect Relationships: This plant is host to a great variety bugs. (Illinois Wildflowers). Traditional Edible, Medicinal Uses: Fruit is edible, gummy, nice to eat, but not much taste. Can use for jams, pies, puddings. High in pectin it is said to guard against radiation and carcinogenesis. A capillary tonic, antioedemic, anti inflammatory, antispasmodic and hypotensive. Leaves and stems medicinal, treating aches and pains, kidney and lung aliments, coughs, fevers. Decoction for eye wash. Crushed roots for eyewash. (Plants for a Future)


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