WSU Clark County Extension

PNW Plants Searchable, categorized images

Common Snowberry

Scientific name: Symphoricarpos albus

Type:Deciduous shrubs
Plant Requirements
Zone:3 to 8
Sun:Full to partial sun
Plant Characteristics
Height:5 ft
Width:6 ft
Bloom:Spring flowers
Bloom Time:May to June
Bloom Color:White
Additional Characteristics



Wildlife value

Description In the Pacific Northwest native plant community Common Snowberry is widely known for its white, waxy berry-like drupes that provide winter substance for area songbirds. Also known as Waxberry or Coralberry

Common Snowberry is an erect deciduous shrub which can grow 2’-5’ tall and spread out to 4’-6’ wide in a rounded thicket spreading by root suckers. Limbs are multi-branched, slender and have brown, shreddy bark.

Leaves are arranged in an opposite fashion. They are typically 1.5” long and elliptic to oval in shape. They are thin and light green on their upper surfaces and paler below. Leaf margins are entire or wavy-toothed.

Flowers appear in the spring in small dense clusters at the ends of the branches. These flowers are pinkish to white and bell-shaped. This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds. Flowers give rise to the white fruit which can grow 3/8” in diameter. The fruit are inedible to humans. Over the winter months birds feast on the berries until they disintegrate naturally.

This species does best in full sun to partial shade on moist, well-drained soils. The roots of Common Snowberry are considered very vigorous and deep ranging making it an excellent choice for bank stabilization. All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested.

None reported.
For assistance, contact Dr. Charles Brun (, (360) 397-6060 5701
Computing and Web Resources, PO Box 6234, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-6234