Native Plant of the Week

What’s that emerald green shrub with bright, unfurling leaves and greenish-white flowers we’re seeing everywhere?  You are likely seeing Osoberry, sometimes referred to as Indian Plum, coming into bloom.  Osoberry is one of the northwest’s earliest native shrubs to leaf out each spring; It is truly a sign of spring when Osoberry displays its flowers, as they gracefully brighten up our landscapes.  Osoberry can be found as far north as British Columbia and along the western slopes of the Cascades.  Traditionally, Osoberry‘s fruits were eaten fresh, cooked, or dried by Native Americans.  Sarah Verlinde, the UW Bothell Herbarium Collections Manager says “crush the fresh spring leaves in your hand for an easy way to identify Osoberry, they should smell like fresh cut cucumber!” Learn more about Osoberry here.