'Shepherdia' Canada Buffaloberry Shrub

'Shepherdia' Canada Buffaloberry Shrub

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Botanical Name Shepherdia canadensis
Mature Height 12 Feet 
Mature Width 6 Feet  
Light Requirement Full Sun to Partial Shade 
Hardiness Zone Zones 2-8
Tolerance Drought, Rabbit, Deer
Attracts Birds
ℹ A highly valued native shrub distinguished by its dark green oval foliage with a rust coloured underside. Rich in vitamin C and iron, the bitter berries taste somewhat sweeter after several freezes or when dried.  The Berries were traditionally harvested by using a stick to beat the Canada buffaloberry bush over a piece of canvas or a hide.  Dried berries were mixed with dried buffalo meat to make pemmican or added to stews and puddings.  Fresh berries are cooked to make syrup, sauce, or jelly. Canada buffaloberries may be whisked into a foamy froth and then combined with copious amounts of sugar to make "Indian" ice cream, which is a highly sought-after treat that is still popular today! Traditionally, the berries were whisked with the inner bark of cedar (Thuja spp.) or Rocky Mountain maple (Acer glabrum), or with thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus) leaves.  Prior to the availability of sugar, it was sweetened with common camas (Camassia quamash) bulbs or western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla) cambium.  The berries were highly valued for this use and traded for with many tribes in areas that lacked Canada buffaloberries. The birds also highly enjoy the berries. Tolerates poor soils. Commonly used for highway and reclamation sites. Xeriscape plant.