Eugenia uniflora, Eugenia michelii, Surinam Cherry, Pitanga, Brazilian Cherry

Eugenia uniflora, Eugenia michelii

Surinam Cherry, Pitanga, Brazilian Cherry
Family: Myrtaceae
Origin: South America
USDA Zone: 9-11?
USDA Plant Hardiness MapPlant used for bonsaiLarge shrub 5-10 ft tallSmall tree 10-20 ftSemi-shadeFull sunModerate waterRegular waterWhite, off-white flowersEdible plantFragrant plant

The Surinam cherry is the easiest to grow of all edible Eugenias and an excellent fresh fruit. The native range of this small tree or bush extends from Surinam through Uruguay. It is very popular in Southern landscaping for its red-colored new foliage against the dark green of older leaves along with its red to black, ribbed fruits. The plant blooms profusely at the end of the spring, and then, occasionally the rest of the year. Fruit develop and ripen in just 3 weeks from flowering. They are deeply 8-ribbed and usually about 1 inch in diameter, although plants bearing fruits nearly 2 inches in diameter have been reported. The juicy sweet-acid pulp encloses a fairly large seed.

The fruit can be excellent or only fair, depending on the variety. The deep red, almost black fruited varieties produce sweeter fruit without that tart aftertaste that is specific for Surinam Cherry. The fruit can be eaten fresh, used to make pies, jellies and jams. The pulp is a good source of calcium, and a fair source of phosphorus and iron. In Brazil, the juice is fermented into wine or vinegar.

Propagation is almost always by seed, however superior varieties can be grafted. Red type and black type forms usually come true to seed. Surinam Cherry is an excellent choice for a hedge with regular trimming, or as a pretty specimen tree; the plant will be happy growing in a pot as well. Cold hardy (to lower 20's for mature plants) and undemanding, it grows well under minimum care providing irrigation which is especially important for young plants; established plants are drought tolerant. If left untrimmed, the bush growing in the ground eventually may reach 15' tall and 15' wide. In small yards, the tree can be cut back hard if it becomes too large; it will form a the bushy shape in no time. This tropical plant can successfully be grown in a pot indoors in the cooler zones. Indoors, misting of the plants is helpful in winter.

See video about this plant.

Learn more: Surinam Cherry Lolita and Bermuda Christmas Pie

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Eugenia uniflora - Black Surinam Cherry Lolita

Black Surinam Cherry, Pitanga var. Black Star, or Lolita. Black fruited Surinam Cherry starts as red and turns black as it ripens.
It has exceptional flavor. The plant is vigorous and ready to fruit the same year. The fruit is very sweet, without aftertaste, large 1-1.2 inch, very juicy. Reliable producer. Hard-to-find. The tree is upright, freely branching.
These cherries are cold hardy and can take short periods of frost. Once established, the plant can withstand upper 20's without damage. The seedlings come true to seed.
See video about this plant.
Learn more: Surinam Cherry Lolita and Bermuda Christmas Pie

Recommended Fertilizer: SUNSHINE C-Cibus - Crop Nutrition Booster
SUNSHINE-Honey - sugar booster

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32 oz (1 qt, 946 ml)
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500 ml (16 oz)
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This item is certified for shipping to California.
Grown in
10"/3 gal pot
In stock