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Hyperacanthus amoenus, Gardenia amoena, Thorny gardenia, Murombe, Bembethu

Hyperacanthus amoenus, Gardenia amoena

Thorny gardenia, Murombe, Bembethu
Family: Rubiaceae
Origin: South Africa
Large shrub 5-10 ft tallSmall tree 10-20 ftFull sunRegular waterPink flowersWhite, off-white flowersFragrantThorny or spinySubtropical, mature plant cold hardy at least to 30s F for a short time

Hyperacanthus amoenus is a large shrub or small tree native to South Africa, typically growing to 5-10 ft tall for a shrub and up to 10-20 ft for a tree. The glossy green leaves on the lateral branches are arranged in whorls of five and bordered by spines that are smaller than the leaves. Buds of the pinkish red flowers open up with white, off-white petals that are delightfully fragrant. After flowering, green fruits develop and become fleshy brown when ripe.

Hyperacanthus amoenus is quite easy to grow in full sun and regular watering. This species is suitable for growing in USDA Zones 9-11, and the mature plants can be tolerant of colder conditions, down to at least the 30s F for a short time. To ensure that the plant thrives in colder climates, it may be necessary to grow it in a pot in order to bring it indoors during the colder months. This will require extra care to make sure that it is given adequate water and light, and regular applications of fertilizer.

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