Aronia Facts

Aronia Facts
Aronia, also known as chokeberry, is deciduous shrub that belongs to the family of roses. There are two species of aronia: black and red. They originate from the eastern parts of the North America. Aronia grows in swampy areas and moist woodlands. It requires moist, well-drained soil and partial shade for the successful growth. Aronia can withstand drought, pollution of the ground, diseases and insect attacks. People cultivate aronia mostly as a source of food and in ornamental purposes.
Interesting Aronia Facts:
Aronia grows in the form of shrub that can reach 3 to 13 feet in height.
Aronia has oblanceolate leaves (they are wider on the top than on the bottom) with wavy margins. Leaves can be smooth or covered with hairs on the bottom side. They change color from green to red during the autumn.
Aronia produces small white flowers arranged in multi-branched clusters (type of inflorescence better known as corymbs) composed of 10 to 25 individual flowers.
Aronia starts to bloom during the May. Flowers contain both types of reproductive organs (perfect flowers). They attract insects, responsible for the pollination of this plant.
Fruit of aronia is small, berry-like pome with thick skin and waxy layer on the surface. Fruit ripens in August. Berries can be red, purple or black colored, depending on the variety.
Birds eat fruit of aronia and facilitate dispersal of seed in the wild.
Aronia propagates via seed and cuttings. Seed retains ability to germinate 5 to 10 years.
Fresh berries have astringent taste, responsible for mouth-puckering (hence the name chokeberry). Red berries are sweeter, but they have lower nutritional value compared with blue and black varieties of aronia.
Aronia is rich source of dietary fibers, vitamins A, E, C, K and B9 and minerals such as calcium, potassium, iron and manganese. 100g of ripe fruit contains only 47 calories.
Aronia can be consumed both in the fresh and dry form. Berries can be used as ingredient of breakfast cereals and for the preparation of cakes, muffins, pies, ice-creams, syrups, juices, jams, jellies and teas.
Dried berries are used as flavoring agents in the industry of wine and beer.
Aronia is often labeled as "superfood" due to exceptionally high amount of antioxidants (substances which prevent cell damage and slow down aging process) compared to other types of fruit.
Native Americans used aronia in treatment of common cold. Root of aronia can be used to stop the bleeding of the wounds, while bark can be used in treatment of fever and diarrhea.
According to some medical studies, aronia can prevent development of certain types of cancer, infections of the urinary tract and cardiovascular and neurological disorders.
Aronia is perennial plant that can survive 40 to 60 years in the wild.

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