General: Small tree, 5-15 m tall; branches ascending to spreading, greyish; winter buds and young growth densely greyish-soft-hairy.
Leaves: Alternate, deciduous, pinnately compound; leaflets 11 to 15 (17), oblong to oblong-lanceolate, 2-6 cm long, sharp-pointed at the tip, mostly smooth, saw-toothed almost to the base.
Flowers: Inflorescence a flat-topped, branched cluster of numerous (75 or more) small flowers, the branches more or less white-hairy; corollas white, the petals 5, nearly circular, 3-4 mm long; calyces hairy, 5-lobed, the lobes triangular; ovaries inferior; stamens 15-20.
Fruits: Berry-like pomes (like miniature apples), globe-shaped, 9-11 mm wide, scarlet, not glaucous, 2- to 5-chambered; seeds 1 or 2 per chamber.
1. Plants becoming trees over 5 m tall; leaflets usually more than 13, winter buds covered with long soft-hairy grey hairs; styles 2 or 3...........................S. aucuparia
1. Plants shrubby, usually less than 5 m tall; leaflets rarely as many as 13, winter buds not covered with long soft grey hairs; styles 3 to 5.
2. Winter buds rusty-hairy; calyces smooth on outside; leaflets blunt or rounded at the tip, toothed for not more than 3/4 of their length; styles 4 or 5, fruit red, glaucous...............S. sitchensis
2. Winter buds sticky, sparsely white-hairy; calyces hairy on outside; leaflets sharp-pointed at tip, toothed for most of their length; styles 3 or 4; fruit orange, not glaucous................S. scopulina
Source: Illustrated Flora of British Columbia
Habitat / Range
Mesic to moist, open forests, fields and roadsides in the lowland zone; frequent in SW BC, rare northward along the coast; introduced from Eurasia.
Sorbus aucuparia is considered an emerging invasive species in the Vancouver region by the Greater Vancouver Invasive Plant Council (2009). An emerging invasive is defined by them as: currently found in isolated, sparse populations but are rapidly expanding their range within the region. It is already well-established in the Fraser Delta.
Ecological Framework for Sorbus aucuparia
The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range. (Updated August, 2013)
Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2020. E-Flora BC:
Electronic Atlas of the Plants of British Columbia [eflora.bc.ca]. Lab for
Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British
Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed:
2021-01-19 8:27:07 PM
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