Plant type

Evergreen or deciduous shrub or small tree


0.3-6m x 1-6m (depending on species and cultivar)

Wildlife benefit

Bird (berries and shelter), bee, bumblebee, honey bee, butterfly nectar and moth caterpillar plant

  • Cotoneasters are a wide group of shrubby or tree-like plants, some offering dense groundcover and others making large screens. Provided there is space for them to grow, they need little pruning or other management.
  • Most produce large numbers of white flowers in summer, followed by red berries.
  • Blackcap, Fieldfare, Redwing and Waxwing eat berries.
  • Brimstone and Red Admiral Butterfly nectar plant.
  • Ypsolopha scabrella Micromoth caterpillar food plant .
  • Fills June gap for bees, bumblebees and honey bees.
  • Flowers also good for many insects and insect-feeding birds.

Note: The following species can be invasive and should not be planted in gardens close to sensitive natural habitat; Cotoneaster microphyllus, C. horizontalis, C. simonsii and C. bullatus.