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Everglades velvetseed, Hammock velvetseed
Guettarda elliptica

Copyright by: George D. Gann

General Landscape Uses: Accent shrub or small tree. Buffer plantings.

Availability: Grown by enthusiasts.

Description: Small tree or large shrub with an open, irregular crown from small upright branches. Bark dark brown, smooth. Leaves dull green above, 1-2 inches long.

Dimensions: Typically 10-20 feet in height; to 23 feet in South Florida. Usually taller than broad.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Range: Monroe, Miami-Dade and Broward counties; disjunct in St. Lucie County; West Indies and Mexico. In Broward County, known only from Hugh Taylor Birch State Park. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map, visit the Exploring Florida website.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of suggested ZIP codes north to Indian River and Manatee counties.

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

Habitats: Pine rocklands and hammocks.

Soils: Moist, well-drained limestone (rarely sandy) soils, with 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 long-term 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 to light shade.

Flower Color: White to reddish-pink.

Flower Characteristics: Semi-showy.

Flowering Season: All year; peak in spring.

Fruit: Rounded purple berry.

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides significant food and cover for wildlife.

Horticultural Notes: Difficult to grow from seed.

References: Schaefer & Tanner 1997

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Other data on Guettarda elliptica available from:

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