Sorbus sitchensis Rosaceae
Sitka Mountain Ash, Pacific Mountain Ash, Western Mountain Ash
- Deciduous shrub or small tree, usually multi-stemmed, to 20 ft (6 m) tall (only 1-2 m tall at higher elevations), rounded crown. Trunk bark smooth or scaly, thin, light gray, inner bark fragrant. Leaves alternate, pinnately compound, 10-20 cm long, usually 9-11 leaflets which are stalkless, each 3-6 cm long, elliptical or oblong, rounded or blunt at ends, margin serrate above the middle, dull to shiny blue-green above and pale below. Flowers perfect (male and female parts) 6 mm wide, creamy-white petals, 4-5 styles, 20 stamen in 3 rows, 15-60 flowers per flat-topped clusters (corymbs), 7.5-10 cm across, "with a bit of an unpleasant (or unusual) odor" [Kruckenberg, 1996, p 115]. Fruit 9-12 mm diam., similar to a small apple, orange-red, bitter, acid, few seeds. Fruit remain on the trees until late winter, making them available as winter forage for birds and small mammals.
- Sun or light shade. In its habitat it occurs in dry to moist, well-drained sandy loam or other soils.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 5 Native range from southwest Alaska south along the Pacific Coast and through the Cascade Range to northern California and east to northern Idaho and northwestern Montana. S. sitchensis (Sitka mountain-ash) hybridizes with S. scopulina ( Greene mountain-ash).
- sitchensis: of Sitka, Alaska