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Ericaceae: Blueberry Family

This family consists of 125 genera and 3,500 species (Carr). It is the family of the cranberry, blueberry, heath, heather, huckleberry, azalea and rhododendron. Most of these plants grow in temperate regions. Most are also acid loving plants and grow well in acidic bogs.

Systematics: Identification of this family can be tough. Look for bell-shapped flowers that have 4 or 5 petals. But, remember that some can have petals in 6's or 7's. Very often the leaves are evergreen. Flowers are also bisexual.

Specimens List

Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum)

Blueberries, contain anthocyanins, an antioxidant pigments, and other phytochemicals which might reduce the risks of caner.


Labrador tea (Ledum groenlandicum)

Used as an herbal remidy by Eskimos and Athabaskan peoples. Mixed as a tea.


Mountain Heather (Cassiope tetragona)

Plants in the Heather group don't have leaf buds in the winter.


Azalea (Rhododendron indicum)

Washington's state flower is the related Rhododendron macrophyllum

Links to more information

Dr Carr's UH Botany Ericaceae Website

 

 
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