The Purple Chokeberry, is actually a hybrid of the Black and red ones. and is now considered a distinct species. The berries are dark purple to almost black and it has a growing season equal to the black chokeberry. The purple chokeberry has a wider range than its red and Black cousins.
PLANTING AND CARE
Select a location with either full sun or partial shade, it will not grow in full shade. It will tolerate most types of soil, however, Slightly acidic soil is the best, Soil pH between 6 and 7 being optimal.
Plants should be spaced 4 to 6 feet apart if growing for ornamentals, if growing chokeberry primarily for fruit production space them even further, about 9 - 10 feet apart. Spacing may vary slightly depending on the cultivar, so consult the packaging per individual plant. It's best to plant chokeberry in the early spring.
Set bare root trees in the center of the planting hole, spreading the roots down and away from the center . Try not to bend them anymore than is absolutely necessary. Mixing organic amendments such as well composted manure or plant materials into the soil to improve it's structure, fertility and moisture retention is recommended but not absolutely necessary.
Amendments to adjust soil pH should be added at this time also. If you are starting from seeds, sowing chokeberry seeds in a container and planting them outside after germination is advisable.
You can also plant them directly into the ground. Plant seedlings or cuttings into the ground at the same depth they were planted in the container. Water them thoroughly - don't drown them, just water thoroughly. Irrigate the chokeberry plants deeply during dry weather periods.Mulching controls weeds and will conserve soil moisture, as it breaks down organic mulch also adds nutrients to the soil. Put 3- to 4-inches of mulch around the base of the shrub, leaving a small mulchless circle around the stem so that none of the mulch comes into contact with the bark.
Chokeberry can reproduce via suckers quite rampantly at times. If the suckering is undesirable, cultivate the area around the chokeberry, pulling out any new suckers as they appear.Weeds should also be removed as they appear.A balanced, slow-release fertilizer applied annually is a good idea to promote plant growth. It is not absolutely essential - as chokeberries , in any reasonable soil will generally do okay without it, especially if you added soil ammendments at planting time , and an organic mulch at the plant base.
Inspect the chokeberry plants , as you would any garden plants for signs of pests or disease problems. Neither is much of a problem with chokeberries as they are hardy and highly resistant - but it does happen from time to time.
If fungus , such as powdery mildew does appears, prune out any effected branches, which will also improve air circulation within the shrub. Avoid wetting the leaves when watering. Every other year chokeberry should be pruned to remove any older unproductive stems.