Vaccinium ovatum Evergreen Huckleberry
Found along the
Grows across a wide range of moisture regimes; Occurs from near sea level to 3,000 feet (0-914 m).
Local occurrence (where, how common)
It is rare in the Cascades but grows throughout the
Coast Rangesand the central Sierra Nevada. It is a particularly common constituent of brushfields which develop after timber harvest in the Coast Ranges of Washington and and in the foothills of the Washington Cascades. Oregon
Requires moist, acidic soil and can thrive where pH ranges from 4.3 to 5.2; tolerant of both sun and shade, though plants do best with shade. Common in coniferous forests at low elevations, especially along edges and clearings. Also found near beaches in the salt spray zone.
Plant strategy type/successional stage (stress-tolerator, competitor, weedy/colonizer, seral, late successional)
Persists in many climax stands but also grows in early seral communities.
Evergreen huckleberry grows as an understory dominant or codominant in
spruce (Picea sitchensis), Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla), and western redcedar (Thuja plicata) forests of the Northwest. Sitka
Common understory associates include salal, red huckleberry (Vaccinium parvifolium), western swordfern (Polystichum munitum),
oxalis (Oxalis oregana), Pacific rhododendron, hazel (Corylus cornuta), thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus), bog Oregon Labradortea (Ledum glandulosa), ovalleaf huckleberry (V. ovalifolium), deer fern (Blechnum spicant), and annual grasses.
May be collected as: (seed, layered, divisions, etc.)
Hard wood cuttings, seed, layering, salvage
Collection restrictions or guidelines
Unlike most other western huckleberries, evergreen huckleberry lacks rhizomes. It reportedly possesses a well-developed rootcrown and sprouts from this structure after aboveground vegetation is damaged.
Seed germination (needs dormancy breaking?)
Seeds of most Vaccinium spp. are not dormant and require no pretreatment for germination if planted in the fall after collecting. Seeds to be sown later may require cold-stratification for 2-3 months.
Seed life (can be stored, short shelf-life, long shelf-life)
Recommended seed storage conditions
Propagation recommendations (plant seeds, vegetative parts, cuttings, etc.)
Evergreen huckleberry can be propagated through hardwood cuttings or by
seed, however seedling establishment is rare in most western huckleberries.
Soil or medium requirements (inoculum necessary?)
Installation form (form, potential for successful outcomes, cost)
Recovery of evergreen huckleberry can be relatively rapid wherever
Cuttings root fairly sporadically, and should be taken July to October.
Reestablishment by seed, if it occurs at all, is likely to be slow.
Young plants can be salvaged, but they should be under one foot tall. (Frequently, these will turn out to be new shoots of a mature plant reviving from deer browsing or logging, and will die from lack of roots.
One gallon container = $3 (www.soundnativeplants.com)
Recommended planting density
Care requirements after installed (water weekly, water once etc.)
Keep soil moist, pH low.
Normal rate of growth or spread; lifespan
To 1.5 to 15 feet (0.5-4.6 m) in height. Plants often become spindly and clambering with extremes of either moisture or shade; Evergreen huckleberry is frequently dwarfed in height on cutover lands because of excessive exposure to sun. Early growth is generally very slow.
Data compiled by Mike