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Gaultheria shallon - Pursh.

Common Name Shallon, Salal
Family Ericaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Grows on sandy or peaty soils in shady positions from the coast up to elevations of 800 metres[60].
Range Western N. America - British Columbia to California. Occasionally naturalized in Britain.
Edibility Rating    (5 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Fully Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full shade Semi-shade Full sun
Gaultheria shallon Shallon, Salal


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Wouterhagens
Gaultheria shallon Shallon, Salal
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Wsiegmund

 

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Summary

Bloom Color: Pink, White. Main Bloom Time: Early summer, Late spring, Mid summer. Form: Spreading or horizontal.


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of shrub
Gaultheria shallon is an evergreen Shrub growing to 1.2 m (4ft) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 5. It is in leaf all year, in flower from May to June, and the seeds ripen from September to October. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils. Suitable pH: acid soils and can grow in very acid soils.
It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Shady Edge; not Deep Shade; Ground Cover;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit
Edible Uses: Tea

Fruit - raw, cooked or dried for later use[2, 3, 4, 183]. Sweet and juicy with a pleasant flavour[11, 95, 101], it makes good raw eating[K]. The fruit can also be made into preserves, pies, drinks etc or be dried and used like raisins[183]. The fruit is about 10mm in diameter[200] and is produced over a period of several weeks in late summer[K]. A pleasant tea is made from the leaves[101].

References

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Astringent  Poultice  Stomachic

A poultice of the toasted, pulverized leaves has been applied to cuts[257]. A poultice of the chewed leaves has been applied to burns and sores[257]. The leaves have been chewed to dry the mouth[257]. An infusion of the leaves have been used as a stomach tonic and a treatment for diarrhoea, coughs, TB etc[257].

References

Our new book Edible Shrubs is now available.

Edible Shrubs provides detailed information, attractively presented, on over 70 shrub species. They have been selected to provide a mix of different plant sizes and growing conditions. Most provide delicious and nutritious fruit, but many also have edible leaves, seeds, flowers, stems or roots, or they yield edible or useful oil.

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Edible Shrubs Book

Other Uses

Dye

A purple dye is obtained from the fruit[99]. It is dark green[168]. A greenish-yellow dye is obtained from the infused leaves[257]. A ground cover plant for a shady position under trees, spreading slowly by means of suckers[188]. It should be spaced about 90cm apart each way[208].

Special Uses

Food Forest  Ground cover

References

Cultivation details

Landscape Uses:Erosion control, Ground cover, Hedge, Massing. Prefers a moist but not boggy humus rich soil in shade or semi-shade[11, 182], but it can also succeed in full sun. A peat and moisture loving species, it requires a lime-free soil[11, 182]. One report says that it can succeed in dry shade[188] and another that it can withstand considerable drought once it is established[208]. Plants are hardy to about -20°c[184]. A vigorous suckering plant, it can be invasive when growing in good conditions, but responds to cutting back[1, 28]. It also succeeds when planted under trees[28, 49]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[200]. Special Features: North American native. The plant is heat tolerant in zones 8 through 6. (Plant Hardiness Zones show how well plants withstand cold winter temperatures. Plant Heat Zones show when plants would start suffering from the heat. The Plant Heat Zone map is based on the number of "heat days" experienced in a given area where the temperature climbs to over 86 degrees F (30°C). At this temperature, many plants begin to suffer physiological damage. Heat Zones range from 1 (no heat days) to 12 (210 or more heat days). For example Heat Zone. 11-1 indicates that the plant is heat tolerant in zones 11 through 1.) For polyculture design as well as the above-ground architecture (form - tree, shrub etc. and size shown above) information on the habit and root pattern is also useful and given here if available. An evergreen. The plant growth habit is a running thicket former forming a colony from shoots away from the crown spreading indefinitely [1-2]. The root pattern is flat with shallow roots forming a plate near the soil surface [1-2]. The root pattern is stoloniferous rooting from creeping stems above the ground [1-2].

References

Temperature Converter

Type a value in the Celsius field to convert the value to Fahrenheit:

Fahrenheit:

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The PFAF Bookshop

Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees, and Woodland Gardening. Our new book to be released soon is Edible Shrubs.

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Propagation

The seed requires a period of cold stratification. Pre-chill for 4 - 10 weeks and then surface sow in a lime-free compost in a shady part of the greenhouse and keep the compost moist[78]. The seed usually germinates well, usually within 1 - 2 months at 20°c, but the seedlings are liable to damp off. It is important to water them with care and to ensure that they get plenty of ventilation. Watering them with a garlic infusion can also help to prevent damping of[K]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are about 25mm tall and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter[K]. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. The seedlings are susceptible to spring frosts so might need some protection for their first few years outdoors. The leaves remain very small for the first few years[11]. Cuttings of half-ripe wood 3 - 6cm long, July/August in a frame in a shady position. They form roots in late summer or spring[78]. A good percentage usually take. Division in spring when new growth is about 7cm tall. Divided plants can be rather slow to get established[182]. We have found that it is best to pot up the clumps and grow them on in a shady position in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Alaska, Australia, Britain, Canada, Europe, North America*, Tasmania, USA,

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Gaultheria adenothrix Shrub0.3 8-11  LMFSM304
Gaultheria antipodaSnowberryShrub1.2 8-11  LMFSM20 
Gaultheria appressaWhite WaxberryShrub2.0 -  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria cumingiana Shrub3.0 9-11  LMSM22 
Gaultheria depressaMountain SnowberryShrub0.1 8-11  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria fragrantissimaFragrant WintergreenShrub1.0 8-11  LMFSM22 
Gaultheria griffithianum Shrub1.8 -  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria hispidaSnowberryShrub0.9 8-11  LMSM21 
Gaultheria hispidulaCreeping SnowberryShrub0.1 5-9 FLMSMWe414
Gaultheria humifusaAlpine Wintergreen, Alpine spicywintergreenShrub0.1 6-9  LMSNM403
Gaultheria insana Shrub0.5 5-9  LMHSNM11 
Gaultheria japonicaCreeping SnowberryShrub0.1 5-9 FLMSMWe413
Gaultheria macrostigma Shrub0.5 7-10  LMSM20 
Gaultheria mucronataPrickly heathShrub1.5 5-9  LMSNM403
Gaultheria myrsinoides Shrub0.2 8-11  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria nummularioides Shrub0.1 8-11  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria ovatifoliaMountain Checkerberry, Western teaberryShrub0.2 5-9  LMFSM303
Gaultheria procumbensCheckerberry, Eastern teaberry, Teaberry, Creeping WintergreenShrub0.2 3-6 MLMFSDM434
Gaultheria pumila Shrub0.1 6-9 SLMSNM20 
Gaultheria pumila leucocarpa Shrub0.2 6-9  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria pyroliifolia Shrub0.2 5-9 SLMFSM20 
Gaultheria pyroloides Shrub0.3 5-9  LMSM30 
Gaultheria rigida Shrub0.0 -  LMFSM10 
Gaultheria sclelophylla Shrub0.0 -  LMFSM20 
Gaultheria trichophylla Shrub0.1 7-10  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria x wisleyensis Shrub1.0 5-9  LMFSM20 

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

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Expert comment

Author

Pursh.

Botanical References

1160200

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

phil rooksby   Fri Feb 29 2008

a photo of this (taken Feb 2008) is on our blogsite http://monkeyandsofia.blogspot.com/2008/02/have-cup-of-tea.html

monkey & sofia

Jay Dawson   Thu Dec 10 2009

This website lists this plant as toxic if eaten... http://www.burncoose.co.uk/site/plants.cfm?pl_id=1947 regards

   Jan 9 2012 12:00AM

Called "Salal" by locals (like me). The berries are best eaten before they get ripe (reddish color), or they get mealy and tasteless (black colored) - I know from experience. And no, as far as I know, they are not poisonous by any stretch of the imagination. The local deer live on the leaves and my goats will eat it to the ground if I let them.

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