Oceanspray (holodiscus discolor)

oceansprayOceanspray (holodiscus discolor, also known as creambush) is a beautiful, deciduous erect shrub reaching up to four meters tall. It has ridged young stems and peeling bark in older stems. The leaves are alternately arranged, hairy, and egg-shaped, with coarse-tooth or lobed margins, and can reach between three and six centimeters long.  Flowers are cream-white colored, growing up to five millimeters across. They are arranged at the terminal branches in clusters like lilacs, between 10 and 17 centimeters long. Flower clusters overwinter and turn brown. It produces small fruits like achenes, and thrives in moist to dry open sites, at low to middle elevations, where it can get maximum sun exposure. Oceanspray’s wood was used for many hard tools, as the wood becomes harder when heated over a fire.