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West Indian-lilac, Florida clover ash
Tetrazygia bicolor
Melastomataceae
 

Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

General Landscape Uses: Accent or specimen shrub or small tree in southern Miami-Dade County.

Availability: Grown by one or two native plant nurseries in South Florida. Available in Lake Worth at Amelia's SmartyPlants (561-540-6296).

Description: Shrub to small tree with an open or dense crown. Trunks to 4 inches in diameter. Bark light gray to brown, rough. Leaves dark green above, silvery beneath, about 3-6 inches long.

Dimensions: Typically 10-15 feet in height; to 41 feet in South Florida. Usually taller than broad when mature. Maintained as a shrub about as broad as tall in pine rocklands.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Range: Miami-Dade County; West Indies. In Miami-Dade County, native only from Long Pine Key in Everglades National Park northeast along the Miami Rock Ridge to the vicinity of Matheson Hammock and the Richmond Pine Rocklands. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map, visit the Exploring Florida website.

Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

Habitats: Margins of rockland hammocks and pine rocklands.

Soils: Moist, well-drained limestone soils, with or without humusy top layer.

Nutritional Requirements: Moderate to low; it prefers soils with organic content, but will still grow reasonably well in nutrient poor soils.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.

Drought Tolerance: Moderate to high; plants growing in extremely dry soils may die during extended periods of drought.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: White petals with yellow stamens.

Flower Characteristics: Showy, in terminal clusters.

Flowering Season: Spring-summer.

Fruit: Purplish or purplish-black berry.

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides food for birds.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from de-pulped seed.

Comments: It is listed as threatened by the state of Florida.


Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Copyright by: Shirley Denton


Other data on Tetrazygia bicolor available from:



 
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