04-25-18 | Education
UConn Professor Creates New Landscaping Plants
Two Modified Forms of Black Chokeberry


The black chokeberry bush grows naturally in all states east of Kansas, with the exception of Florida. The University of Minnesota classifies the plant as having a growth rate of "Medium."

Mark Brand, a professor of horticulture at the University of Connecticut, recently patented his two new forms of Aronia melanocarpa, or the black chokeberry bush. Brand's modified forms are said to be more useful for landscaping purposes, according to the university.

Naturally, black chokeberry plants grow between 4 to 8 feet tall, with wide spreading foliage and inedible berries. Brand's new forms, which he named "UC165" and "UC166," are said to be more desirable as ornamental landscaping plants for a number of reasons.

Compared to the natural plant, UC165 is smaller, has more abundant clusters of white flowers, has edible black berries, grows smaller and glossier leaves and even turns colors with the seasons! These modifications, made by Brand, can allow the plant to be more desirable for landscaping projects, as the plant retains its hardiness and ability to grow in many types of soil, while lessening the difficulty of maintenance. This form will be sold to nurseries and the general public under the name "Low Scape Mound."

His second form, UC166, is a tall, narrow form of the black chokeberry bush. It is designed to be an alternative to traditional privacy hedges. This form also produces white flowers and changes with the seasons. It will be available to the general public under the name "Low Scape Hedger."

Both new forms of the bush are slated to be released to nurseries and garden centers in spring of 2018.

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