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'Reay' Nannyberry Seed


Latin Name: Viburnum lentago


Family: Caprifoliaceae

Native Range: Southern Canada and the northern United States west to Eastern Saskatchewan.

Seed Source: Improved seed strain, nannyberry seed block, near Indian Head Saskatchewan.

Height and Spread: 4m x 2m (10 years) 

Overview: The ‘Reay’ seed strain was developed specifically for tree planting in the Canadian prairies. It is a composite of selected parent trees from native stands and shelterbelts. The seed strain is named in honour of John Reay, a tree planting inspector at the Forest Nursery Station from 1914 to 1924.

Fruits: Bluish-black drupe, 8-12 mm long with thin sweet edible flesh. 

Average number of seeds/packet: 150


Stratification: Pre-soak seed for 24 hours then stratify in moist sand (10 % moisture) for 180 days at 20oC followed by 90 days at 5oC.

Ideal sowing time: Non-treated seed in summer (will germinate the following spring) or stratified seed in spring.

Sowing instructions:  Outdoor seedbed - Sow 1.5 cm deep and 50 seeds/meter; Greenhouse - sow 2 seeds per cell 1 cm deep.

Growing conditions: Grows in full sunlight and shade. It is extremely hardy and prefers moist soils. It will colonize a site with root suckers.


'Reay' nannyberry is an excellent choice for windbreaks, EcoBuffers, and wildlife habitat plantings. This seed strain was developed specifically for agroforestry planting. Nannyberry stabilizes eroding soil and provides wildlife valuable cover. It produces nutritious sweet berries.