Carolinian
and Deciduous Forest Trees

of Southern Ontario

Choke Cherry
Prunus Virginiana

Location in Ontario:
Choke Cherry grows throughout the Deciduous Forest Region and northward.


Choke Cherry in flower,Norfolk County

Genus Prunus: Cherry trees have alternate simple leaves with toothed edges. They are monoecious with perfect flowers. The flowers are white and beautiful. The fruit is a drupe with a single seed. In Ontario, this genus includes Black, Pin and Choke Cherry.

Habitat: Choke Cherry is found along forest edges or cleared areas as it is intolerant of shade.

Landscape Use:  Choke Cherry is a nice, small-sized landscape tree with pretty white flowers, and dark red cherries.

Leaves: The leaves are alternate and simple with toothed edges and a sharp point.


Choke Cherry leaves

FALL COLOUR WATCH: yellow

Flowers: Choke Cherry is monoecious with perfect flowers. Flowers appear in May in dense clusters with a cylindrical shape.

Seeds:  The seeds are found in sour-tasting red to black drupes. The fruit is an important food source for many birds and small mammals. Seeds are produced after a few years of growth, with good crops yearly.

TREE FACT: Choke Cherry fruit can be used to make jelly, syrup, juice and pie.


Chokecherry with lots of fruit

Bark: The bark is reddish-brown with lenticels, becoming gray and scaly with age.

Size: Choke Cherry is a small, shrub-like tree that can also reach 10 metres in height. It is short lived to about 40 years.

Wood: Choke Cherry wood is not used commercially.
Specific Gravity: Unavailable
Janka Harndess: Unavailable
Wood Comparison Chart


Choke Cherry with fruit

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