Plants with white berries are truly unique. Red berries are striking, especially in winter. Black berries are elegant. However, white berries add something really special to a garden, particularly on those snowless winter days. Here are five trees and shrubs to plant in your garden.
White Berry Bushes
A bush with white berries is not that common, but you can find a few types with this unusual fruit color:
Beautyberry. This shrub describes a family of multiple varieties native to Asia, Central America, and southeastern North America. American beautyberry, Callicarpa americana, is known for its striking, bright purple berries, but you can also find white cultivars of a few species. These include the C. dichotoma cultivar ‘Albifructus’ and the C. americana cultivar ‘Lactea.’ Most varieties are large and rambling, growing up to 10 feet (3 m.), and tolerate partial shade.
Snowberry. Native to much of North America, snowberry’s name describes it perfectly. A medium-sized shrub, it can grow up to 6 feet (2 m.) tall. It’s a great choice for a native species that benefits wildlife and that produces snowy white berries.
Nandina. This is an Asian native with several varieties, including ‘Alba’ with white berries. These berries are not pure white but more of a cream color. They are also toxic, so be careful with animals and children. Nandina is a broadleaf evergreen that grows up to 6 feet (2 m.) tall and wide and tolerates rocky soil, preferring some shade.
Siberian dogwood. Cornus alba is a dogwood shrub native to central and eastern Asia. It produces pretty white berries tipped with a little blue or green in summer. In winter, this dogwood gives visual interest with red twigs. It can grow up to 10 feet (3 m.) tall and tolerates wet soil and partial shade. Siberian dogwood can colonize easily through root suckers, so prune these regularly if you don’t want this dogwood to spread too far.
White Berry Trees
Finding a tree with white berries is a challenge, but the white mulberry does the job. Morus alba is native to Asia. The leaves of this tree that have been feeding silkworms in China for millennia. Hopeful silk producers brought the trees to the U.S. during the colonial era.
Unlike the black and red mulberries, this tree produces berries that turn white or pinkish white when ripe. Compared to other varieties, the fruits are not considered the tastiest, but they are a beautiful asset in the garden.
White mulberry makes a good landscaping tree with its round shape, fruit, and berries. It attracts birds and small mammals. Expect it to grow between 30 and 50 feet (9-15 m.) tall and wide.