Hi, I’ve attached a photo of a plant that has spread from my neighbour’s yard to mine. Can you identify it, and if it’s invasive how can I get rid of it or at leastcontrol its spread? Thank you.
Thanks for contacting Toronto Master Gardeners to help identify the shrub in your yard.
It is most likely a Chokecherry (Prunus virginiana), a large shrub native to northeastern North America. It grows in sun and part sun; prefers average, dry to medium, well-drained soil; and is commonly found along shrub borders and in woodland areas. These shrubs can be somewhat invasive due to its suckering habit–shoots which grow from adventitious buds on the roots. If one wants to control the plant’s spread, simply remove the sucker by cutting it off where it is sprouting from the base of the shrub.
The common name, chokecherry, is due to the astringent nature of the edible berries it produces. The small berries are a food source for birds and animals. The fruits can be harvested to make jellies and jams, but should not be eaten directly from the tree. Best to leave them for the wildlife.
We hope that you will appreciate the value of this shrub for attracting wildlife to your garden.