Amelanchier canadensis is the botanical name of serviceberry tree. Some serviceberry trees can grow to be 40 feet tall, while others remain in the 10- to 20-foot range with a dense, bushy spread up to 10 ft across. There are 45 species of serviceberry trees.
This large shrub has erect stems that form multi-stemmed clumps. The serviceberries, genus Amelanchier, are deciduous shrubs or small trees that grow in the understory of temperate forests. The bush sends up numerous suckers and can become quite a thicket. Serviceberry trees have leaves that are 2 inches long and have a very pretty white fuzzy coat when young, but becoming shiny green as they mature.
The serviceberry tree is known by different names, depending on where one’s location. It is known as saskatoon berry, juneberry, shadblow and shadbush. It is in the same family of plants as roses. It has bluish-green elliptical leaves that turn into intense fall foliage colors of yellows, oranges and reds. Winter finds the serviceberry with bare branches but a very beautiful and interesting trunk that is gray with streaks running across it vertically.
When spring comes, the serviceberry tree greets you with an abundance of showy white flowers, which only last about a week.
The flowers are beautiful but not large-only about 1-½ inches across. Then comes summer and the tree starts to grow juicy berries. These begin green and then change to red and finally to a purple-black color when they are fully ripe. The fall color is brilliant yellow, red or orange.