McKenzie Chokeberry Tree

Growth Facts

McKenzie Chokeberry

Aronia melanocarpa 'McKenzie'
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A tasty treat for you and the pollinators to enjoy! With three seasons of beauty and plenty to share! McKenzie Chokeberry opens up the spring season with delicate white blossoms, politely unfolding for butterflies to adore and brightening your gardens. As the summer heat rolls in, plump purple berries begin to form, ripening in September, dotting the tree in juicy, delicious little berries. They shrivel up fast for great jam making, as you hear the songbirds singing as they finish off the ones you didn't pick! It may be a smaller tree, but it proudly shows off its fall foliage in deep shades of red and orange. It seems like McKenzie Chokeberry has it all!

Growth Facts

Recommended by Our Growers

The Story

Black Chokeberry is a superfood! That’s right—the bitter berry with the unappetizing name is gaining ground as a health food. And with good reason! The berries are higher in antioxidants than any other cold-hardy fruit (five times higher than blueberries), and they have cancer-fighting properties. A few companies have started turning chokeberries into juice; they blend it with apple or grape juice to make it palatable. You’ll find it marketed under its botanical name, Aronia. You can also buy frozen Aronia berries for muffins or bars or, better yet, grow your own!

The Details

"McKenzie Chokeberry is a member of the rose family with no close relations to chokecherry. In the spring, white flowers bloom, opening up to pollinating bees. By mid to late summer, berries start to form and are dark purple-black by September. The berries are small and very juicy, however, they will shrivel soon after ripening. With its blazing orange-red fall color, our native Chokeberry has been suggested as a more eco-friendly alternative to the ubiquitous Burning Bush, which has become invasive in many parts of the U.S. We think this is a great idea!

Height: 5-10 ft
Spread: 3-10 ft
Exposure: Full Sun, Part Shade
Foliage: Green
Fall Foliage: Orange-Red
Zones: 3-8"

How to Grow

Plant McKenzie in an area with full sun; part shade is okay too; the best fruit harvests will come from being exposed to full sun. As McKenzie can grow in average-medium moisture soil that is well-draining to growing in boggy conditions, soil requirements are very lax. You will want to be sure to remove any suckers that start to grow to prevent the spread of McKenzie unless spreading is desired.

Size Guide

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McKenzie Chokeberry Tree