Southeast: Fruit Producing Trees

Photo © Bob Mikal

Native fruit-producing trees and shrubs are essential components of diverse habitats. With a little space, these regionally-appropriate plants make excellent additions to most sites. Even better, wildlife visitors–from the smallest pollinators to mammals–will use these trees for food and shelter.

Southern magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora)

Photo © David Midgley

Above: Southern magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora)
Description: This fragrant tree can reach heights of 50-100ft. It is a common choice for its beauty, frequent flowering, and ability to provide shade.
Bloom: Creamy white flowers bloom spring through fall. Flowers develop bright red fruits in the late summer and fall.
Wildlife: Pollinators, squirrels, opossums, songbirds, woodpeckers, quail and Wild Turkey.

black gum

Photo © Regina Kreger

Above: Tupelo/Black Gum (Nyssa sylvatica)
Description: These slow-growing trees reach approximately 30-60 ft. or taller with glossy, oval leaves. The foliage is a bright orange/red in the fall.
Bloom: Blooms in late spring. Dark Blue fruit develop by late summer and stay on through the fall.
Wildlife: Fruit-eating mammals, bees, Blue Jay, American Robin, thrushes, Northern Mockingbird, Eastern Bluebird, Gray Catbird, tanagers, phoebes and flickers.

REd Mulberry

Photo © Melissa McMasters

Above: Red Mulberry (Morus rubra)
Description: These deciduous trees with heart shaped leaves grow to be about 30-60 ft. tall. The fruit are a favorite among birds.
Bloom: Flowers are small, green and easy to miss in early spring. The fruit looks like clusters of blackberries and can range in color from red to dark purple. They ripen in the late spring.
Wildlife: Fruit-eating mammals, Mourning Cloak Butterfly, Wood Thrushes, bluebirds, waxwings, orioles, Northern Cardinals, jays, grosbeaks, kingbird, Northern Mocking birds.

Add it to your map

Placing and IDing your trees and shrubs.
First, add your trees and shrubs as objects to your map by selecting the Toolshed and Second.


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Then, make sure to complete the characteristics by clicking on the green Info window. First identify your plant under Basic Information. If you enter the common or scientific name in the second bar, this will connect to the USDA plant database. Select the name that correlates to your plant.


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Then, complete the characteristics by telling us about the features of this specific tree or shrub.


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Other regional fruit tree recommendations:
Rocky Mountains
Pacific Mixed Forest
Northeast and Midwest
California Chaparral