Empetrum nigrum


Evergreen mat. Stems reddish, crowded with needle-like leaves. Leaf hairless, with edge noticeably rolled under, back of leaf grooved. Flowers very small, 3 petals, dark purplish red. Berries in small clusters, red when young, turning black as they ripen (as pictured). Grows in wet to dry areas with members of the heath family along coast and in alpine, but not in between. Circumboreal in cold-temperate areas. Foliage easily confused with that of mountain-heathers when out of season.

  • Rarity: Locally Common
  • Flowering Time: Early Spring
  • Life Cycle: Perennial
  • Height: Mat
  • Habitat: Coastal, West-Side Forest, Alpine
  • Found In: Mt. Rainier Np, Olympic Np, N Cascades Np
  • Native: Yes