Woody bush with berries ID

Anyone know what this is? It is growing in between lilac bushes in a client’s yard. She said that they have a lot of birdfeeders so she wasn’t sure if the seeds came from that. The owner is mostly concerned whether the berries are poisonous. Thanks!

3 thoughts on “Woody bush with berries ID

  1. This is the invasive common buckthorn, Rhamnus cathartica, a horribly invasive weed that has poisonous fruit. The birds eat the fruit and it is bad for them too. I don’t think buckthorn will kill you, but you will wish it did as it causes severe diarrhea.

  2. Yes, aronia has obovate (upside down egg-shaped) leaves with serrulate (finely serrated) margins that feel like a zipper if you run your fingers along the margins backwards. Aronias also have distinctive, tiny, black dots/hairs on the upper leaf midrib. The leaf base is attenuate (wedge-shaped) and there are often stipules at the base of the leaf petiole. The fall color of aronias is excellent (orange to red to purple) whereas buckthorn has LOUSY fall color, sickle shaped leaf veins, terminal spine at the end of the twig and is subopposite (Rhamnus cathartica).

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