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Useful Temperate Plants

Vaccinium macrocarpon

Aiton

Ericaceae

+ Synonyms

Oxycoca macrocarpa (Aiton) Raf.

Oxycoccus macrocarpus (Aiton) Pers.

Oxycoccus palustris macrocarpos (Aiton) Pers.

Schollera macrocarpa (Aiton) Steud.

Vaccinium propinquum Salisb.

Common Name: American Cranberry

No Image.

General Information

Vaccinium macrocarpon is a creeping, evergreen shrub with long, thin, wiry prostrate stems. Erect or ascending shoots, 4 - 15cm tall develop from the axillary buds, the plant forming a small to large colony[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
270
Title
Flora of N. America
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/fna/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line version of the flora with an excellent description of the plant including a brief mention of plant uses.
,
1131
Title
The Genus Vaccinium in North America
Publication
 
Author
Vander Kloet S.P.
Publisher
Canadian Government Publishing Centre; Ottawa
Year
1988
ISBN
0-660-13037-8
Description
A detailed study of the genus in N. America.
].
The plant has long been harvested from the wild for its fruit which was used locally and also traded. It is increasingly cultivated on a commercial basis in N. America on land that has been adapted so it can be flooded at will[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
]. The plant is sometimes grown as an ornamental in gardens, where it can be used to form a ground cover.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
43
Title
Gray's Manual of Botany.Eighth Edition
Publication
 
Author
Fernald. M. L.
Publisher
American Book Co.; New York
Year
1950
ISBN
0442222505
Description
A bit dated but a good and concise flora of the eastern part of N. America.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.

Range

Eastern N. America - Ontario to Newfoundland, south to Tennessee and North Carolina.

Habitat

Acid boggy ground[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
43
Title
Gray's Manual of Botany.Eighth Edition
Publication
 
Author
Fernald. M. L.
Publisher
American Book Co.; New York
Year
1950
ISBN
0442222505
Description
A bit dated but a good and concise flora of the eastern part of N. America.
]. Bogs, swamps, mires, wet shores and headlands; at elevations from sea level to 1,400 metres[
270
Title
Flora of N. America
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/fna/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line version of the flora with an excellent description of the plant including a brief mention of plant uses.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *  *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *  *
HabitEvergreen Shrub
Height0.20 m
Growth RateMedium
PollinatorsInsects, Self
Self-fertileYes
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Ornamental, Wild

Cultivation Details


Requires a moist or semi-boggy lime free soil, preferring one that is rich in peat or a light loamy soil with added leaf-mould[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Prefers a very acid soil with a pH in the range of 4 to 4.5, tolerating up to 6.1; plants soon become chlorotic when lime is present[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Plants grow best in a poor soil, richer soils result in extra foliage production at the expense of fruit[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Succeeds in full sun or light shade though it fruits better in a sunny position[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Requires shelter from strong winds[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
A very dwarf shrub producing long slender creeping stems that root into the soil. Upright stems grow from the axillary buds in the second year and these upright stems flower and fruit the following year[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Widely cultivated for its edible fruit in N. America, there are many named varieties[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Cultivated plants are usually grown in artificial bogs that are often flooded in the winter[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Plants can self-fertilize but cross-fertilization by insects results in higher yields[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Cultivated plants take about 5 years to come into full bearing but will then crop well for 60 - 100 years[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
On well-prepared ground a crop of 500 bushels per acre has been gathered in a single season[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
]. A bushel of cranberries is usually 40lb (18.2 kilos) in weight, thus this yield should equal 22 tonnes per hectare[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].
Dislikes root disturbance, plants are best grown in pots until being planted out in their permanent positions[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw or cooked[
2
Title
Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World.
Publication
 
Author
Hedrick. U. P.
Publisher
Dover Publications
Year
1972
ISBN
0-486-20459-6
Description
Lots of entries, quite a lot of information in most entries and references.
,
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
17
Title
Flora of the British Isles.
Publication
 
Author
Clapham, Tutin and Warburg.
Publisher
Cambridge University Press
Year
1962
ISBN
-
Description
A very comprehensive flora, the standard reference book but it has no pictures.
,
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
,
101
Title
Edible Wild Fruits and Nuts of Canada.
Publication
 
Author
Turner. N. J. and Szczawinski. A.
Publisher
National Museum of Natural Sciences
Year
1978
ISBN
-
Description
A very readable guide to some wild foods of Canada.
]. It can also be dried for winter use[
62
Title
A Field Guide to N. American Edible Wild Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Elias. T. and Dykeman. P.
Publisher
Van Nostrand Reinhold
Year
1982
ISBN
0442222009
Description
Very readable.
]. Rich in vitamin C[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
], the fruit is too acid for most peoples tastes to be eaten raw, so it is mainly used in pies, preserves etc[
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
]. It is said that a teaspoon of salt added to the cooking fruit can take the place of half the sugar normally used[
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
]. The red fruit is between 10 and 20mm in diameter[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].

Medicinal

An infusion of the branches has been used as a treatment for pleurisy[
257
Title
Native American Ethnobotany
Publication
 
Author
Moerman. D.
Publisher
Timber Press. Oregon.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-88192-453-9
Description
Very comprehensive but terse guide to the native uses of plants. Excellent bibliography, fully referenced to each plant, giving a pathway to further information. Not for the casual reader.
].

The fruit is antiseptic, antitumor, diuretic and febrifuge. It is taken, especially as a juice, for the prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections, neurogenic bladder, as a urinary deodorizer for people with incontinence, prevention of urinary catheter blockage, and to heal skin around urostomy stomas. It is also used for treating type 2 diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, scurvy and pleurisy[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].

Cranberry fruits contain anthocyanidins, ellagitannins, flavonols such as quercetin and kaempferol, catechins, and phenolic acids. Other constituents include ascorbic acid, beta-carotene, chlorogenic acid, glutathione, and alpha-tocopherol[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
Cranberry juice is acidic, but does not acidify the urine as previously thought[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
Cranberries contain proanthocyanidins, also known as condensed tannins, and a high-molecular weight compound that has not yet been identified. These constituents seem to interfere with bacterial adherence to the urinary tract epithelial cells. Cranberry, however, does not seem to have the ability to release bacteria which are already adhered to the urinary tract epithelial cells[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
Laboratory evidence suggests that fructose in cranberries might also contribute to the anti-infective activity[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
Cranberry juice has shown antibacterial activity in culture medium against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Proteus mirabilis[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
Preliminary data suggest that a high molecular weight cranberry constituent might prevent adhesion of plaque bacteria that cause periodontal disease. Cranberry compounds might also prevent adhesion of Helicobacter pylori (H. Pylori) in the stomach[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
Early evidence shows that cranberry juice might increase the antioxidant capacity of plasma[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].
There is also preliminary evidence that the proanthocyanidin fraction of cranberry might have anticarcinogenic activity[
137
Title
The Plantsman. Vol. 9. 1986 - 1987.
Publication
 
Author
?
Publisher
Royal Horticultural Society
Year
1986
ISBN
-
Description
Excerpts from the periodical giving cultivation details and other notes on some of the useful plants including Carya spp and Crocus sativus.
].
Cranberry, as well as many other fruits and vegetables, contains significant amounts of salicylic acid, which is the active metabolite of aspirin and has anti-inflammatory, antiplatelet, and antitumor effects. Cranberry juice contains about 7 mg of salicylic acid per litre. Drinking three 250 mL servings of cranberry juice daily for two weeks increases serum salicylate levels. It also increases excretion of salicylic and salicyluric acids (a salicylic acid metabolite) in the urine[
1137
Title
Cranberry
Publication
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
Author
Jeff M. Jellin, PharmD, Founding Editor
Website
http://www.naturaldatabase.com
Publisher
Therapeutic Research Faculty.
Year
2007
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line database containing extensive information on medicinal plants and research relating to them.
].

Agroforestry Uses:

Plants can be grown as a ground cover when planted about 1 metre apart each way[
208
Title
Plants for Ground Cover
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
J. M. Dent & Sons
Year
1990
ISBN
0-460-12609-1
Description
An excellent detailled book on the subject, very comprehensive.
]. Plants spread rapidly when they are thriving[
208
Title
Plants for Ground Cover
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
J. M. Dent & Sons
Year
1990
ISBN
0-460-12609-1
Description
An excellent detailled book on the subject, very comprehensive.
].

Other Uses

None known

Propagation

Seed - sow late winter in a greenhouse in a lime-free potting mix and only just cover the seed[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
]. Stored seed might require a period of up to 3 months cold stratification[
113
Title
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
Publication
 
Author
Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W.
Publisher
Athens Ga. Varsity Press
Year
1987
ISBN
0942375009
Description
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
]. Another report says that it is best to sow the seed in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. 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 in mid spring of shoots 15cm long, in a sandy mix in a frame covered in plastic to keep them moist[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August in a frame[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
]. Slow and difficult.
Layering in late summer or early autumn[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
]. Another report says that spring is the best time to layer[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Takes 18 months[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
].
Division of suckers in spring or early autumn[
113
Title
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
Publication
 
Author
Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W.
Publisher
Athens Ga. Varsity Press
Year
1987
ISBN
0942375009
Description
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
].
Cite as: Temperate Plants Database, Ken Fern. temperate.theferns.info. 2018-10-19. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Vaccinium+macrocarpon>

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