Lyonia ligustrina (L.) DC.

  • Family: Ericaceae (blueberry family)
  • Common names: he-huckleberry, male blueberry

    Shrub to 4m (12 ft) tall. Crown irregular, widely spreading. Twigs terete, pubescent when young, glabrous with age. Leaves alternate, simple; oblong-elliptic to ovate, 3.2-8.9 cm (1.3-3.5 in) long; firm, glabrous above, pubescent to glabrous beneath; narrowed into a short petiole at base, acute to acuminate at apex, margins entire to serrulate. Flowers in panicles, pedicels pubescent, 2-6 flowered clusters, 3-5 mm (0.1-0.2 in) long, spreading and triangular; petals 5-lobed, white; styles columnar; stamens 8-12; flowers appear from May to July. Fruits capsules, 3-5 mm long, globose with five thickened rib-like sutures.

    Distribution: Oklahoma and Arkansas east to Florida and north to Quebec. Uncommon in Oklahoma, restricted to the Ouachita Mountains.
    Habitat: moist, sandy, acid soil.
    Comments: Lyonia honors John Lyon, an American botanist (died 1818 in Asheville); ligustrina denotes the resemblance to Ligustrum.
    NWI status: FACW
    Horticulture: First cultivated in 1748. Can be propagated by seed or cuttings.

    Distribution in Oklahoma:

    Last update: 9/14/99
    Go to Oklahoma Biological Survey Home Page