Cascara can be considered a large shrub, especially in its multi-stemmed form, or as a small tree. Its bark is sometimes collected for medicinal use. A good wildlife plant, the berries (decorative yellow or red before turning black) are eaten by grosbeaks, woodpeckers, jays, robins and tanagers. Insect-eating species are also attracted to Cascara--kinglets, bushtits, chickadees, and nuthatches. Leaves are used by the swallowtail and other butterflies. Bears, foxes and raccoons enjoy the fruit, too.
A small, native deciduous tree, 20-30ft tall, it has dark green, boldly veined leaves, 2-4in long, that turn a good yellow in the fall. Overall appearance is light textured and fine. Use this in a woodland forest setting, or along a stream with Vine Maple, Ninebark, and other native understory plants, under Big-leaf Maple and Alders where it will get partial shade and moist soil. The birds and other wildlife like its black fruits.
Zones: 5 to 8
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