Cranberry is the fruit of several small creeping or trailing woody plants. The small-fruited or northern cranberry (Vaccinium oxycoccos) is found in marshy land in northern North America, northern Asia, and northern and central Europe. Its stems are wiry and creeping, cranberry flowers appear in June, and its fruit ripens in September. The American or mountain cranberry (V. macrocarpon) is found wild from Newfoundland to the Carolinas and westward to Minnesota and Arkansas. The cranberry is cultivated on acid soils of peat or vegetable mold that is free of loam and clay and cleared of turf, having a surface layer of sand. It is grown extensively in Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Wisconsin and near the coast in Washington and Oregon. Cranberries are used mostly as a sauce and as a relish for meats but are also used in pies and fresh fruit beverages. Cranberry consumption is highest in the U.S. and Canada.
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