cranberry(redirected from American cranberry)
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cranberry, low creeping evergreen bog plant of the genus Oxycoccus of the family Ericaceae (heath family). Cranberries are considered by some botanists to belong to the blueberry genus Vaccinium. The cultivated species is the native American or large cranberry (O. or V. macrocarpus). The tart red berries are used for sauces, jellies, pies, and beverages. The Massachusetts colonists probably served wild cranberries with turkey at the first harvest feast in 1621, establishing a Thanksgiving tradition. Commercial cultivation began in Massachusetts in the early 19th cent., then in New Jersey and Wisconsin, later in Washington and Oregon and in Canada. United States cranberry acreage now totals c.25,000. Massachusetts leads in production, followed by Wisconsin and New Jersey. Cranberry bogs are flooded to control weeds, to protect against cold, and to facilitate harvesting. Cranberry is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Ericales, family Ericaceae. The high-bush cranberry or cranberry tree, a member of the honeysuckle family, is unrelated.
See P. Eck, The American Cranberry (1990).
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Red tart berries, small leathery shiny oval leaves that stay green year round on wiry stems, white/pink flowers. Used for pleurisy and lung infections. Cranberry may help prevent urinary tract infections, kill viruses and bacteria, prevent kidney stones, soothes rectal disturbances, diarrhea, cystitis. More of a preventative measure than curative. Do not consume if taking Warfarin.
Edible Plant Guide © 2012 Markus Rothkranz
Any of several plants of the genus Vaccinium, especially V. macrocarpon, in the order Ericales, cultivated for its small, edible berries.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
any of several trailing ericaceous shrubs of the genus Vaccinium, such as the European V. oxycoccus, that bear sour edible red berries
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005