Vaccinium fuscatum Aiton
Cyanococcus atrococcus (A. Gray) Small
Cyanococcus fuscatus (Aiton) Small
Cyanococcus virgatus sensu Small
Vaccinium arkansanum Ashe
Vaccinium atrococcum (A. Gray) A. Heller
Vaccinium corymbosum L. var. atrococcum A. Gray
Black highbush blueberry
Black highbush blueberry is native to North America.
Identification: Shrubs are perennials, reaching 11' (3.5 m), with brown bark. Leaves are alternate, sometimes persisting through the winter, 1-1¼" (3-3.5 cm) × ⅝-⅞" (1.6-2.5 cm) wide, and lanceolate, elliptic, or ovate. Leaves are fairly thick and leathery, hairless above, finely hairy and much lighter in color below. Flowers are hermaphroditic, containing both male and female organs, but they do not fertilize themselves. They are urn-shaped and cream-colored, with pink bases and sometimes pink stripes, about ⅛" (6 mm) in size. Fruits are ⅛-⅜" (6-10 mm) in diameter.
This Vaccinium comparison chart also includes a couple of similar-appearing species that are not Vaccinium.
Edibility: “Not very tasty,” according to one source.
Vaccinium fuscatum on Southeastern Flora, the Southeastern U.S. Plant Identification Resource
Vaccinium fuscatum on www.carolinanature.com
Vaccinium fuscatum on the New England Wildflower Society’s GoBotany site
Vaccinium fuscatum on Plants for a Future, a resource and information centre for edible and otherwise useful plants
Vaccinium fuscatum at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Vaccinium fuscatum on Discover Life
Vaccinium fuscatum on delawarewildflowers.org
Vaccinium fuscatum description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.