Sparkleberry or (Farkleberry) is an attractive, tough, underused woodland shrub usually eight to ten feet in height, though occasuinally it takes on a tree form. It is found in dry woods and open forests from North Carolina south to Florida and westward to Texas and Arkansas, usually in the dappled shade of the subcanopy. In NC, it is reported in the piedmont and coastal plain counties. Sparkleberry can tolerate a wider range of pH than other members of the genus and is also fairly drought and heat tolerant. The leaves are glossy, toothed, leathery and dark green. In the South, they may persist into winter, turning deep reds, but may drop off where it is colder. The bark is exfoliating in shades of brown and orange, and branching is very nicely contorted. Flowers are numerous and charming, small (1/3 inch), bright white, delicate bells in drooping clusters, and the shiny blue/black berries that follow persist into winter, providing food for a broad range of animal species including rabbits and white tailed deer and many birds. This is an attractive looking shrub, and in addition it draws the birds and butterflies that that we are supporting by gardening with natives!