A large genus, some 450 species of shubs and a few small trees, often stoloniferous, evergreen or deciduous. Leaves alternate, simple, entire or serrate, short petioles. Flowers solitary or in clusters, calyx 4-5 parted and persistent in fruit, corolla more or less tubular, 4-5 lobes, white, pink, or red, 8-10 stamens. Fruit a berry with numerous seeds. Native range from the Arctic to the tropical mountains, also a few species in southern Africa.
Vaccinium: an ancient name, its origin is disputed.