Subshrub ID: Eastern Spicy-wintergreen

Photo of Eastern Spicy Wintergreen

Eastern Spicy-wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens) is an evergreen subshrub of the forest floor. The plant's leathery leaves grow clustered on short upright stems. The red, pea-sized fruit dangles from the center in bunches or singly, as is the case above. The fruit is edible, if a bit mealy, with a minty flavor. The leaves, when chopped up and steeped as a tea, or simply nibbled, release a similarly pleasant flavor. Other common names for Gaultheria procumbens include Checkerberry, Teaberry, and Spiceberry. This subshrub can be distinguished from Partridge-berry in that the latter features smaller, oppositely-arranged leaves and fruit with a distinct pair of "eyes".

2 thoughts on “Subshrub ID: Eastern Spicy-wintergreen”

  1. I’m looking for a source for these berries so I can make some more teaberry ice cream. I got a cup full one year, made a half gallon of the ice cream and ate enough at one time to nearly burst. It’s sooooo good. Any assist or referrals appreciated.

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