Information on Snowberry

Common Name: Snowberry
Scientific Name: Symphoricarpos albus
Irish Name: Póirín sneachta
Family Group: Caprifoliaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period

Click for list of all flowering by month
Snowberry is not easily confused with other wild plants on this web site.

This unremarkable shrub of roadsides, hedgerows and laneways, is a twiggy, straggly plant which reaches over 2.5m high, forming large thickets, spreading by suckers.  It produces tiny pink funnel-shaped 5-petalled flowers (4-6mm across) in short, terminal racemes from June to September.  Its oval leaves are small and untoothed.  In autumn it has round white berries (1.5-2cm diameter) which contain 2 seeds.  This is a plant which was introduced from North America and it belongs to the family Caprifoliaceae.   

I first identified this shrub in Dundrum, Co Dublin in 1952 and photographed it in Ballitore, Co Kildare in 2008. 

If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre

The leaves of Snowberry are a larval foodplant of the Death's Head Hawkmoth.  The berries are poisonous to humans but pheasants and grouse are known to eat them.