Aronia melancarpa ‘Viking’ is a beautiful shrub with a very flavorful sour fruit. Easy-to-grow native plant is loaded with purple-black berries that ripen in late summer and remain on the bush throughout winter. The fruit is antioxidant-rich and wonderful for jams, preserves, wine and baking. The fall red foliage is incredibly striking. Aronia is a staple in Eastern Europe backyard gardens & has great potential in the US. This plant is used for both ornamental and culinary purposes.
Common Name: Chokeberry Viking/Viking/Chokeberry
Scientific Background: This plant is in the genus of Aronia, and in the family of Rosaceae, which is native to eastern North America
Scientific Name: Aronia Melanocarpa
Blooms/Foliage: Though this plant is mainly grown for the bitter fruit it produces, it also is noticed by its leaves and flowers. This plant’s leaves are serrated and are evergreen. The flowers of this plant vary but are small and bell-shaped.
Hardiness Zones: Chokeberries can thrive in most places but wild plants grow in the states Arkansas, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.
Growth Habit: The Viking Chokeberry grows in a shrub and can reach heights of up to 5′-8′.
Exposure: This plant uses lots of sunlight to produce its delicious berries, so it is best to put this plant where it can receive plenty of sunlight.
Water: Make sure your chokeberries’ soil gets plenty of soil to stay moist and is watered regularly though this plant is drought-resistant.
Spread: These plants can be planted as close as 2 1/2″ but depends on where and what you are planting these plants for.
Soil: Viking Chokeberries grow best in soils that range from mild to alkaline.
Potential Handling Dangers: To some, this plant may cause skin irritations, rashes, or other reactions, with its fruit. These reactions are not very common.
Potential Plant Dangers: Birds love to feast on these berries. Scales thrips, blueberry maggots, ladybugs, and aphids are common chokeberry pests. Weeds can also get in the way of your plants’ growth.
Helpful Tips: Use this plant’s berries to add a nice color to desserts and other food items! Though this fruit is commonly eaten fresh off the bush but is also popular in jams and jellies.If you harvest too many berries for consumption, you can easily freeze them to prolong their freshness. Also, birds love chokeberries so you can either put a protective net over them, or plant them in a temporary building to keep them from eating your delicious berries.