- Elaeagnus umbellata is a deciduous shrub from 3-20 ft. (0.9-6.1 m) in height with thorny branches. It is easily recognized by the silvery, dotted underside of the leaves.
- Leaves are alternate, 2-3 in. (5-8 cm) long and 1 in. (2.5 cm) wide. The margins are entire and undulate. Leaves are bright green to gray green above and silver scaly beneath with short petioles.
- Small, yellowish tubular flowers are abundant and occur in clusters of 5 to 10 near the stems from February to June.
- Fruits are round, red, juicy drupes which are finely dotted with silvery to silvery-brown scales. Each drupe contains one seed. Fruits ripen from August to November.
- Ecological Threat
- Elaeagnus umbellata invades old fields, woodland edges, and other disturbed areas. It can form a dense shrub layer which displaces native species and closes open areas. Elaeagnus umbellata is native to China and Japan and was introduced into North America in 1830. Since then, it has been widely planted for wildlife habitat, mine reclamation, and shelterbelts. It is a non-leguminous nitrogen fixer.