Maiden Berry (Crossopetalum rhacoma)

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The Maiden Berry, also known as Rhacoma, is a perennial evergreen fruiting shrub native to Florida. A member of the Celastraceae or “staff-vine” family, it is related to the Spindle Tree and American Bittersweet. A perfectly ornamental shrub, the Maiden Berry’s arching stems of leathery leaves grow small reddish flower clustering no higher than 10 ft. high. Blooms and fruits mature year-round, and the berries mature to sweet, bright maroon drupes devoured primarily by the birds. Roots and leaves can be harvested into a tea for promoting urination for kidney and bladder health. They are a rare and beloved tree, especially in south Florida, where they grow naturally in hammocks by the coast. These drought tolerant Maiden Berry shrub don’t enjoy salt, yet can still be found in areas very close to the ocean breeze. They grow gorgeous bonsai and make for colorful landscaping.

Common Names:
Maiden Berry,  Maravedi rhacoma, Florida Crossopetalum


Traditional Uses: 
Culinary, Folk Medicine


Native to:
Florida


Plant Type:
Perennial Evergreen Fruiting Shrub 


Harvest Season:
Year round

 

Mature Size:
Up to 10 ft. tall


Soil & Moisture:
Rich, well-draining limestone or clay soils. Drought tolerant. 


Light Requirements:
Full Sun, Part Shade


Self-Fertile: 
Yes


Growth Rate: 
Moderate to Slow


Zone Hardiness: 
Outdoors 10-11 with frost protection; Patio/Greenhouse 4+ 


Propagation:
Our Maiden Berries are grown from seed and are capable of harvest after 1-3 years.

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