Leaves alternate, egg-shaped, to 5 cm long, 2.5 cm wide, pale green above, whitish-waxy below, leathery, few or no teeth.
Flowers white, cylindrical to urn-shaped, to 0.8 cm long, calyx and flower stalk whitish-waxy; blooms April-June.
Fruit fleshy, to 0.8 cm, blue with waxy bloom, edible. Fruit eaten by many birds and mammals, including bears, raccoons, coyotes, foxes, skunks and opossum (Wilson 1993).
Wetland status: NL.
Frequency in NYC: Frequent.
Habitat: Dry oak woods and fields. Usually on acid, nutrient–poor soil. Tolerates acid soils down to pH 3.9 (Greller et al. 1990), found in soil pH 4.4-5.0 (Gargiullo unpublished data). More common than V. angustifolium in NYC. a Also appears more shade tolerant.
Notes: Twigs eaten by deer and rabbits (Martin et al. 1951).