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Narrow varnishleaf
Dodonaea viscosa var. angustifolia

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

General Landscape Uses: Accent shrub.

Availability: Grown by enthusiasts.

Description: Medium shrub with erect branches. Leaves narrow, about 2-4 inches long.

Dimensions: About 3-6 feet in height. Usually taller than broad, except when recovering from fire.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Range: Miami-Dade County north to Martin and Charlotte counties; Greater Antilles, Mexico, Central America, South America and the Old World. Somewhat rare and scattered in South Florida. In Miami-Dade County, it is know only from Long Pine Key in Everglades National Park northeast along the Miami Rock Ridge to the Richmond Pine Rocklands; in Broward County, it was perhaps never present or is extirpated; in Palm Beach and Martin counties it is know from the Pal-Mar area in the interior; also in Martin it is known from the Hobe Sound area; it is more common in the Big Cypress National Preserve in Collier County and then on the barrier islands of Lee County; it was collected once in the Charlotte Harbor area bewteen 1938 and 1953 by John L. Blodgett. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map of D. viscosa in the broad sense, visit the Exploring Florida website. Populations in the Florida Keys are D. elaeagnoides, those along the east coast are mostly D. viscosa var. viscosa, while the most widespread taxon is D. viscosa var. angustifolia, which is found near the coast in Martin County, in the interior, and along the southwestern coast.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations north to Martin and Charlotte counties.

Habitats: Pinelands and coastal uplands.

Soils: Moist, well-drained to periodically inundated freshwater soils.

Nutritional Requirements: Low; it grows 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: High; does not require any supplemental water once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: Yellow.

Flower Characteristics: Inconspicuous. Predominately dioecious, with male and female flowers on different plants.

Flowering Season: Spring-fall.

Fruit: Winged capsule; green to pinkish.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from seed. Capsules can be smashed or placed into a dry blender to separate the seed. Plant in container with 2" or more light potting soil. Place in the full sun.

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Copyright by: James Johnson, 2014
In habitat, Everglades National Park, Florida

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Copyright by: George D. Gann, 2011
In habitat, Dominican Republic

Copyright by: George D. Gann, 2012
In habitat, Everglades National Park, Florida

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Other data on Dodonaea viscosa var. angustifolia available from:

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