Oso Berry

mikebotann(8a SE of Seattle)April 9, 2014

Our native Oemleria cerasiformis is just finishing up blooming now. It is known as Oso Berry or Indian Plum.
My wife and I used to float the North Fork of the Stilliquamish River, putting in just east of Oso and floating down to Arlington.
Pretty country. I just though this might be a good time to high light this shrub.

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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

A high precipitation area, that's why they've been bedeviled by rain at the disaster site. When a few of us went to Oso to visit another college friend and his parents we were told the rainfall there was 90 in.

The shrub is an indicator of a winter wet/summer dry site condition, therefore characteristic of places like the banks of active rivers.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 12:29PM
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mikebotann(8a SE of Seattle)

It's the primary understory shrub here. That, and Red Elderberry.
Yes, it's wet here. Way wetter than Seattle.
I think the convergence zone has something to do with Oso's precipitation. It funnels right up the Stillaguamish River Valley. Same for the Skykomish River Valley.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 5:24PM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Red elder likes it moist also, although I don't think it is tied into the wet/dry thing in the same way, probably prefers that it is moist all the time.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:50PM
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The Oemleria around here -southwest Snohomish Co.- all seem to be male thus never having any "berries" or "plums" and are very small shrubs, often roadside.
The largest ones I have ever seen were in Brinnon near the banks of the Dosewallips river--they were female,with "plums" and about the size of large vine maples!-

( edited -the size of the shrub -- not the fruit--was about the size of vine maples. )

This post was edited by plantknitter on Sat, Apr 26, 14 at 22:19

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 12:26AM
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Lots here in Kitsap county as well, both along the roadside and at the edge of the wooded areas. I look forward to them as they are one of the earliest things to pop into bloom and are always a great harbinger of spring. Once they are out of bloom - and in leaf - they tend to fade into the background so never notice if they produce the plums or not.

And yes, they can get to be pretty good-sized shrubs.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 2:38PM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

At fruiting time a nice feature is that part of a cluster will have gone black while the rest is still orange or yellow. But birds take them quickly.

Top of the height range is 23 ft. Most I see are well above my head.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 10:47PM
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hemnancy(z8 PNW)

I have them in my yard but have never seen fruit, perhaps the all-male thing would explain it. I'm disappointed, I would like to try them.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 6:27AM
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