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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Wednesday - May 05, 2010

From: Oneonta, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Fruit bearing trees and shrubs for wildlife in NY
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

What are the best fruit bearing trees and berry bushes to grow in Oneonta New York. We are working on a project for the Oneonta Job Corps that is a green initiative. When we buy the fruit bearing trees and berry bushes to plant on site. What do you think we would get the best results with. We want some variety. This is a teaching initiative as well. Let me know.

ANSWER:

First, I am assuming you are talking about native trees and shrubs that will bear fruit primarily for wildlife, not human consumption (even though some are quite palatable to both ... bears love apples and birds love blueberries!)

If you are, in fact, planning something like a community food garden you are better off contacting your local agricultural extension service for assistance as that is more in their area of expertise.

If you are planning this project for natural habitat and wildlife benefit I recommend you check out the National Wildlife Federation website for information and highly recommend "The Wildlife Gardener's Guide" published by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. You will fiind detailed instructions and plant lists whether you are planning a stop-over garden for migrating bird in the Atlantic Flyway or are planning to sustain your year round residents.

You can find other books by searching our Bibliography and selecting the topic "Wildlife".

Some favorites for all birds that are native to your area are:

Cornus alternifolia (alternateleaf dogwood)

Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)

Cornus racemosa (gray dogwood)

Ilex glabra (inkberry)

Ilex verticillata (common winterberry)

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis (common elderberry)

Sassafras albidum (sassafras)

Viburnum acerifolium (mapleleaf viburnum)

Viburnum opulus var. americanum (American cranberrybush) (Image)

Viburnum rufidulum (rusty blackhaw)


Cornus alternifolia

Cornus florida

Cornus racemosa

Ilex glabra

Ilex verticillata

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis

Sassafras albidum

Viburnum acerifolium

Viburnum rufidulum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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