Shrub or small tree to 10 m; lvs ovate or lance-ovate, 6-12 cm, broadest near the middle, conspicuously acuminate, rather sharply serrate with ascending or salient teeth; pedicels shorter than the subtending petioles; fls 4-5(6)-merous, the sep and pet ciliate; fr red, 6 mm thick; nutlets grooved on the back; 2n=40. Mt. woods; May, June. Var. montana (I. monticola), occurring from w. Mass. to N.C., has the lvs usually at least twice as long as wide, glabrous beneath or only sparsely pubescent (especially along the veins), the sep glabrous except for the ciliate margins. Var. mollis (A. Gray) Britton, occurring from Ky. to Ga. and Ala. has the lvs commonly less than twice as long as wide, velvety-pubescent beneath, and the cal villous. (I. beadlei)
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.