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Shepherdia canadensis

Shepherdia canadensis

Shepherdia canadensis

Shepherdia canadensis

Shepherdia canadensis

Shepherdia canadensis (Buffaloberry)
Elaeagnaceae (Oleaster Family)

Foothills, montane, subalpine. Moist woodland hillsides. Spring.
Above: Hillside Road, June 17, 2015 and Bolam Pass Road, June 8, 2016.
Left: Haviland Lake, June 8, 2007 and Roaring Fork Road, June 6, 2016.

This Buffaloberry is fairly common at the bottom of hillsides in the mountains but its color is not as distinctive as Shepherdia argentea and therefore it is not noticed very often. It grows to a sprawling six feet tall and wide, less than half the size of S. argentea.

Shepherdia is dioecious, bearing staminate (male) flowers on separate shrubs from the pistillate (female) flowers.  All three Shepherdia shown on this web site flower profusely in very early spring and then the pistillate shrubs put on an abundance of berries.

In 1753 Linnaeus named this species Hippophae canadensis; it was given its present name in 1818 by Thomas Nuttall.

Shepherdia canadensis
Shepherdia canadensis (Buffaloberry)
Elaeagnaceae (Oleaster Family)

Foothills, montane, subalpine. Moist woodland hillsides. Spring.
Ryman Creek Trail, June 13, 2007.
Roaring Fork Road, August 16, 2007.

The top side of S. canadensis leaves is distinctly different from the bottom. Some authorities indicate that the upper surface is glabrous (smooth), but the photos at left and below indicate that at least some shrubs are densely hairy with intriguing starburst (stellate) hairs. The underside of the leaves is covered with a cinnamon scale-like growth.

     Shepherdia canadensis

Shepherdia canadensis (Buffaloberry)
Elaeagnaceae (Oleaster Family)

Foothills, montane, subalpine. Moist woodland hillsides. Spring.
Ryman Creek Trail, June 14, 2011and August 16, 2007; and Bolam Pass Road, June 8, 2016.

Minute staminate flowers will pollinate pistillate flowers (both just a few millimeters wide) to give rise to berries treasured by bears.

                              Shepherdia canadensis 

            Shepherdia canadensis

The shiny green of early spring leaf growth mellows to a dark green as berries ripen red.

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color Key

Species present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Range map for Shepherdia canadensis  

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