A global community of nature enthusiasts
photographing and learning about wildlife
A plant in the family Myrtaceae, it is a large shrub or small tree with a conical form, growing slowly to 8 meters in height. The leaves are glossy green, up to 4 cm long, and new leaves are copper-colored. Fragrant white flowers mature into reddish fruits up to 2 cm in diameter. The taste ranges from sweet to sour, depending on the cultivar and level of ripeness (the darker red to black range is quite sweet, while the green to orange range is strikingly tart). The Surinam Cherry is often used in gardens as a hedge or screen. The fruit is high in Vitamin C, and its predominant food use is as a flavoring and base for jams and jellies.
Native to tropical America. Known as Pitanga throughout Brazil or Ñangapirí in surrounding countries, The tree was introduced to Bermuda for ornamental purposes but is out of control, and is now listed as invasive in Bermuda.