Photinia pyrifolia (Aronia arbutifolia)
The Red Chokeberry is a shrub in the Rosaceae Family, making it related to plums, roses, and the cherry tree. The fruits of the Chokeberry persist into winter and are a source of food for birds in winter, although not a primary one. The berries are edible to humans, but are very bitter and can cause a choking sensation, thus the name. They can be processed and made into a jam albeit thick due to the high concentrations of pectin in the fruits.
Commonly found in the Piedmont (foothills), this plant was selected to embrace the hyperlocal aspects of the site being in the first 600 feet of Piedmont. One block south from the garden begins Meridian Hill Park, which descends along the great Atlantic Seaboard Fall Line. A natural geological feature that separates the coastal plain from the Piedmont. Expressed geomorphically, this separation is also seen in many species which only live in one region or the other.