Connecticut Plants
Small Cranberry
Vaccinium oxycoccos L.

This is one of two species of cranberry; the other, large cranberry is the one used in cooking. The easiest way to identify them is probably the leaves -- on small cranberry, the leaf edges are generally rolled under (see images below). The two plants also differ in the size of their fruit -- a quarter to half inch long on small cranberry, and a half to one inch on large cranberry.

  • Family: heath (Ericaceae)
  • Habitat: bogs, especially in cool areas
  • Height: 1-4 inches
  • Flower size: 3/8 inch long
  • Flower color: pink
  • Flowering time: May to July
  • Origin: native
Vaccinium oxycoccos L.
Vaccinium oxycoccos L.

A stem of small cranberry, showing the undersides of the leaves. The leaf edges are rolled under.

Vaccinium oxycoccos L.

A stem of large cranberry for comparison. Note that the leaf edges are not rolled under."