Sorbus – Popular Shrubs for the Garden
The Mountain Ash or Rowan (Sorbus aucuparia), a native plant, will, in time, reach 20-30 feet, making a round-headed tree, so its position should be chosen with some care. The leaves, divided into many narrow leaflets, are graceful, and the small whiteare produced in clusters in May.
Although this is among the best of small trees, it does have the disadvantage that the fruits seldom stay long enough for them to be fully appreciated for they are eagerly devoured by birds. Fortunately there is a yellow-fruited form, Sorbus xanthocarpa, which is less attractive to birds. There are other forms, too, including asplenifolia, with deeply-cut, fern-like leaves, and fastigiata, more upright in growth and thus more suitable for restricted spaces.
There are many other varieties of sorbus and among these Sorbus discolor is worth growing for its bright red, long-lasting autumn foliage. Sorbus hupehensis, somewhat taller, attracts attention because ‘of its white or pale pink fruits.
Sorbus essertauiana, 20-25 feet, carries great clusters of rather small scarlet fruits which hang on the leafless trees well into winter.
View: more varieties of popular shrubs