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Saskatoon Berry


Latin Name: Amelanchier alnifolia


Family: Rosaceae

Native Range: Native to the Canadian prairies.

Seed Source: Smokey saskatoon berry orchard, near Indian Head Saskatchewan.

Height and Spread: 3m x 2m (5 years)

Overview: This saskatoon berry seed strain was developed specifically for agroforestry planting. It is characterized by good berry production and adaptability to a wide range of growing conditions.

Fruit: Berry-like pomes up to 1.0 cm in diameter containing a single seed. About 180 seeds per gram.


Stratification: Pre-soak seed for 24 hours then stratify in moist sand (10% moisture) for 90-120 days at 5°C.

Ideal sowing time: Non-pretreated seed outdoors in late September (will germinate the following spring) or stratified seed in spring.

Sowing instructions: Outdoors - sow 2 cm deep, 50 seeds/meter; Greenhouse - sow 3 seeds per cell.

Growing conditions: Saskatoon berry grows on a wide variety of soils but favors moist, loamy soils with a pH of 5.0 to 8.0. It is shade tolerant but prefers a sunny exposure.


Saskatoon berry is used in shelterbelts, Ecobuffers, and wildlife habitat plantings. The dense roots and rhizomes of Saskatoon make it useful for soil stabilization and erosion control on moist sites including streambanks. It provides good food and cover for birds plus small and large mammals. The berries are highly edible and are a prized fruit-producing plant in the home garden or commercial orchard.