Image for Canadian Buffaloberry

Canadian Buffaloberry

Scientific name

Shepherdia canadensis


The Canada Buffalo Berry is a deciduous shrub species that can grow up to 3 m tall. This plant may also be known by the common names: Soapberry, Rabbitberry, or Russet Buffalo Berry. The leaves are dark green, oppositely arranged, are narrowly oval shaped, have silvery hairy undersides, have flaky rust coloured scales on the undersides, and are about 5 cm long. The flowers are small, tubular, yellow coloured, have four lobes, and bloom in March before the leaves emerge. These flowers develop into bright red, pea-sized fruit with a single stony seed and ripen in the fall. The fruit is edible to humans but may have a bitter, soapy taste and should not be eaten in large quantities.

Planting conditions

Canada Buffalo Berry grows best in moist or normal well-drained conditions with full or partial sun exposure. It can grow in a variety of soil types with a range of pH levels. This shrub is drought tolerant, wind tolerant, cold hardy, and can grow in nutrient poor soil. This plant naturally grows along river or lake shorelines, in wet meadows, or in drier habitats, like prairies and rocky canyons.


  • Plant height:
    • Max 3m
    • Any
  • Moisture level:
    • Dry
    • Normal
    • Moist
    • Wet
    • Drought Tolerant
  • Light conditions:
    • Full sun
    • Partial sun
  • Soil type:
    • Sandy
    • Loamy
    • Clay
    • Humus
    • Rocky
  • pH:
    • Acidic
    • Basic
    • Normal
  • Depth:
    • Potted
  • Eco Zone:
    • 1a
    • 1b
    • 2a
    • 2b
    • 3a
    • 3b
    • 4a
    • 4b
    • 5a
    • 5b
    • 6a
  • Plant type:
    • Shrub
  • Height:
    • 3 m
  • Spread:
    • 2 m