Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Elaeagnus commutata
American silver-berry, wolfberry

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in Washington; Alaska to Washington and California (but not Oregon), east to the Rocky Mountains, Great Plains, and eastern Canada.

Habitat: Gravel benches and scabland, commonly along watercourses.

Flowers: June-July

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Rhizomatous, unarmed shrubs, spreading to erect, 1-4 m. tall; young branches brownish-scurfy, old branches dark grayish-red.


Leaves alternate, short petiolate, the blades lanceolate to oblanceolate, 2-7 cm. long, acute to obtuse, usually silvery-scurfy on both surfaces.


Flowers 1-3 in leaf axils or clustered at the base of new twigs; pedicles 1-2 mm. long; hypanthium surrounding, but not adnate to the ovary; calyx 4-lobed; petals wanting; stamens 4, attached near the top of the hypanthium; ovary superior, the wall hardened and longitudinally fluted.


Drupe obovoid, 9-12 mm. long

Accepted Name:
Elaeagnus commutata Bernh. ex Rydb.
Publication: Flora of the Rocky Mountains 582. 1917.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Elaeagnus argentea Pursh, homonym (illegitimate)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Elaeagnus commutata in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database

WA Flora Checklist: Elaeagnus commutata checklist entry

OregonFlora: Elaeagnus commutata information

E-Flora BC: Elaeagnus commutata atlas page

CalPhotos: Elaeagnus commutata photos

7 photographs:
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