Saskatoon, sugarplum, shadbush, serviceberry, sarvisberry, chuckley pear. Juneberry is a sweet tree with many common names, and many species under one genus: Amelanchier. The small trees are in bloom en masse here, with their 5-petaled white flowers in long groupings called racemes.
The many names of this early blooming tree indicate various associations with its seasonal timing. Serviceberry, for instance, is a name associated with the tree that blooms at the time in spring when the ground has thawed enough to dig graves, to have a service. Shadbush refers to the alignment of the blooming of this tree with the running of the small herring fish called shad.
Juneberry is the first tree to flower this spring at Wolf Ridge. Other trees like wild plum, pin cherry, and choke cherry are quickly catching up!
– Luciana Ranelli and Hannah Hemmelgarn