Epigaea repens L.
Epigaea repens L. var. glabrifolia Fernald
Trailing arbutus is native to parts of North America, central Europe, and western Africa.
Identification: These very low-growing shrubs, 4-6" (10-15 cm) high, are among the first to bloom in the spring. Remaining low to the ground, they spread to widths of about 24" (60 cm). The fragrant flowers, about ½" (1.3 cm) across, are red, pink, or most commonly white. Leaves are oval, leathery, evergreen, often battered-looking, dark green, 1-3" (2.5-7.6 cm) long. Berries are yellowish-orange, with white interiors, about ⅛" (5 mm) in diameter.
Edibility: Plants are poisonous to some livestock, and may be to people as well. The flowers are sometimes added to salads, adding a sweet-sour taste.
Epigaea repens on Carolina Nature, from Will Cook
Epigaea repens at the University of Connecticut Plant Database
Epigaea repens on Plants for a Future, a resource and information centre for edible and otherwise useful plants
Epigaea repens at the Virginia Tech Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation
Epigaea repens at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Epigaea repens at Botanical.com
Epigaea repens at the University of Wisconsin's Robert W. Freckmann Herbarium
Epigaea repens on the Connecticut Botanical Society's Connecticut wildflowers site
Epigaea repens at the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service
Epigaea repens on eFloras
Epigaea repens description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 3 Jul 2017.