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Bernieh's Garden

Ardisia elliptica or Shoe button Ardisia

Genus: Ardisia.

Species: Ardisia elliptica.

Common name: Shoe button Ardisia
Botanic name: Ardisia elliptica
Family: Myrsinaceae

Shrub or small tree to 4 m high. Native of Asia and Malesia from Japan (Ryuku Islands) to New Guinea and across to southern India. It has leathery leaves and gets red-tinged new foliage.

Distinguishing features: It has a corolla (joined petals) in pink or white at first and the flower sepals are about 2 mm long, pale green and covered in tiny black glands. Flowers can self pollinate. The white to pink to mauve flowers are star-shaped and in pendulous axillary clusters. Flowers mainly in summer.

Flowers are followed by the fruit. This is fleshy and turns red as it matures and dark purple to black at maturity.

Planted as an ornamental for its rapid growth and attractive fruit. Grows in moist tropical forests. Plants are shade-tolerant.

This shrub has become naturalised here in northern Australia and is spreading into bushland areas where the seeds have been dispersed by birds.

Photos of this plant

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  • Acnistus_6