Sp. Pl. 1: 350. 1753,.
Plants erect, not colonial, sometimes suckering, 10–50 dm; twigs green, angular to terete, usually hairy in lines. Leaves usually deciduous; blade dark green, ovate to narrowly elliptic, 15–70 × 10–25 mm, subcoriaceous, margins sharply serrate or entire, surfaces glabrous or hairy abaxially. Flowers: calyx green, glabrous; corolla white to pink, ± cylindric, 5–12 mm; filaments usually ciliate. Berries dull black to blue, glaucous, 4–12 mm diam., glabrous. Seeds 10–20(–25), ca. 1.2 mm. 2n = 24, 48, 72.
Phenology: Flowering spring(-early summer).
Habitat: Open swamps, bogs, sandy margins of lakes, ponds, and streams, flatwoods, gray-birch scrub, pine barrens, mires, bay heads, upland ericaceous meadows, upland woods, ravines, mountain summits
Elevation: 0-1600 m
B.C., N.B., N.S., Ont., Que., Ala., Conn., Del., Fla., Ga., Ill., Ind., Ky., La., Maine, Md., Mass., Mich., Miss., Mo., N.H., N.J., N.Y., N.C., Ohio, Okla., Pa., R.I., S.C., Tenn., Tex., Vt., Va., Wash., W.Va., Wis., introduced in Europe (Britain, The Netherlands), e Asia (Japan), Pacific Islands (New Zealand).
Every morphological variant of the high-bush blueberry has been named formally at one time or another. At least 25 such taxa have been raised to specific rank; none is distinct throughout its putative range nor has the properties normally associated with biological species, including Vaccinium atrococcum and V. elliottii. See S. P. Vander Kloet (1980) for a complete list of synonyms. Feral populations readily become established wherever cultivars have been planted, e.g., Britain, British Columbia, Japan, Missouri, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Washington, and Wisconsin.