Herb: Mountain Huckleberry


Latin name: Vaccinium membranaceum


Synonyms: Vaccinium myrtilloides


Family: Ericaceae (Heath Family)



Medicinal use of Mountain Huckleberry:

Antiseptic, astringent, carminative, hypoglycaemic. An infusion of the roots and stems has been used in the treatment of heart troubles, arthritis and rheumatism.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Deciduous
Shrub

Height:
100 cm
(3 1/4 foot)

Flovering:
June
to July

Habitat of the herb:

Thickets and woodland edges. Moist woods.

Edible parts of Mountain Huckleberry:

Fruit - raw or cooked. A sweet but rather acid flavour. Sour but delicious according to other reports. A reasonable source of vitamin C. This fruit is amongst the largest and best flavoured of all the wild blueberries. The native North Americans would often dry the fruit for use in the winter.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow late winter in a greenhouse in a lime-free potting mix and only just cover the seed. Stored seed might require a period of up to 3 months cold stratification. Another report says that it is best to sow the seed in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Once they are about 5cm tall, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August in a frame. Slow and difficult. Layering in late summer or early autumn. Another report says that spring is the best time to layer. Takes 18 months. Division of suckers in spring or early autumn.

Cultivation of Mountain Huckleberry:

Thickets and woodland edges. Moist woods.

Known hazards of Vaccinium membranaceum:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.