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January 2019

Did you know that when Gaultheria mucronata blooms in sping, it still has a good load of the previous year's berries on all the branches?

Prickly Heath (Gaultheria mucronatai).

Prickly Heath - Gaultheria mucronata

Gaultheria is a genus of about 135 species of shrubs in the family Ericaceae. These plants are native to Asia, Australasia and North and South America. In the past, the Southern Hemisphere species were often treated as the separate genus Pernettya, but no consistent reliable morphological or genetic differences support recognition of two genera, and they are now united in the single genus Gaultheria.

The genus Pernettya was designated by a French botanist, Charles Gaudichaud-Beaupe, in 1825 to honor Antoine J. Pernetty, author of Bougianville's voyage to South America. The genus Gaultheria was created earlier, in 1735, by C. Linnaeus to honor Dr. Gaultier, a physician of Quebec City. Some 200 years later in a review of the two genera several hybrids of Gaultheria and Pernettya were described, however, the authors did not suggest uniting the two genera, believing that more study was needed. In 1990 a thorough study of the two genera was published and the authors concluded that Pernettya should not be maintained as a separate genus. This has resulted in Pernettya being merged into Gaultheria, and the former intergeneric hybrids designated ÷-Gaultheria are now included in Gaultheria. However, in the nursery trade the Pernettya designation is still frequently used.

The species vary from low, ground-hugging shrubs less than 10 cm (3.9 in) tall, up to 2.5 m (8 ft 2 in) tall, or, in the case of G. fragrantissima from the Himalaya, even a small tree up to 5–6 m (16–20 ft) tall. The leaves are evergreen, alternate (opposite in G. oppositifolia from New Zealand), simple, and vary between species from 3 to 10 cm (1.2 to 3.9 in) long; the margins are finely serrated or bristly in most species, but entire in some. The flowers are solitary or in racemes, bell-shaped, with a five-lobed (rarely four-lobed) corolla; flower colour ranges from white to pink to red. The fruit is a fleshy berry in many species, a dry capsule in some, with numerous small seeds.

Gaultheria mucronata, known as prickly heath and in Chilean Spanish as chaura, syn. Pernettya mucronata, is a species of flowering plant in the family Ericaceae, native to southern Argentina and Chile. The Latin specific epithet mucronata means “prickly”, referring to the foliage.

It is a compact, bushy, evergreen shrub with glossy green leaves and solitary white flowers in spring, followed in autumn by showy globose berries up to 1.5 cm in diameter. The stiff, upright branches of Gaultheria mucronata are laden with these  berries like gleaming china beads in colours from pearlywhite through pink to deep claret. These start to form in July but are not in evidence until much later in the year and last through to the spring.

When it blooms in May, it still has a good load of the previous year's  berries on all the branches. The previous year's berries in fact begin to grow larger after having remained small & shiny & fresh through the winter. Iit is refreshing for a winter garden and find a shrub that, even under January's austere regime, is every bit as showy

The plant is dioecious, meaning that both male and female plants must be grown together in order to produce fruit. The plant is not self-fertile. It prefers moist, shaded conditions.

Fruit is edible raw or cooked. The lilac-coloured fruit does not look tremendously edible, and the texture is somewhat like polystyrene - but the fruit of some forms is juicy, almost melts in the mouth, has a very pleasant slightly sweet flavour and makes a very good dessert fruit.

The plant can be used to make a low hedge. A good ground cover plant for a sunny position, forming dense thickets. They are best spaced about 60cm apart each way. Plants can be cut back in the spring if they are becoming too lanky and open in growth.

Source:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaultheria
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaultheria_mucronata
https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Gaultheria+mucronata
https://landscapeplants.oregonstate.edu/plants/gaultheria-mucronata

 

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Goldenrain Tree - Koelreuteria paniculata
Naranjilla - Lulo - Solanum quitoense
Brazil nut tree - Bertholletia excelsa
Sea grape - Coccoloba uvifera
Bignay - Antidesma bunius
Cashew - Anacardium occidentale
Giant Himalayan Lily - Cardiocrinum giganteum
African Hemp - Sparrmannia africana
Lychee - Litchi chinensis
Prickly Heath - Gaultheria mucronata
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Australian Finger Lime - Citrus australasica
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Job's tears - Coix Lacryma-jobi
Velvet Bean - Mucuna pruriens
Java Apple - Syzygium samarangense
Screwpine - Pandanus utilis
Marimo - Aegagropila linnaei
Achocha/Caigua - Inca cucumber - Cyclanthera pedata
Rubber Tree - Hevea brasiliensis
Sugar cane - Saccharum officinarum
Sacha inchi - Plukenetia volubilis
Coffea - Coffee Tree - Coffea arabica
Liquorice - Licorice - Glycyrrhiza glabra
Mullein -Verbascum thapsus
Iceplant - Mesembryanthemum crystallinum
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Roselle - Hibiscus sabdariffa
Black Goji - Lycium ruthenicum Murray
Rose Cactus - Pereskia grandifolia
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Cassabanana - Sicana odorifera
Chilean myrtle - Arrayan - Luma apiculata
Kurrajong - Brachychiton populneus
Rice-paper Plant -Tetrapanax papyrifer
Shell Ginger - Alpinia zerumbet
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Coco de Mer - Lodoicea maldivica
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Buffaloberry - Shepherdia argentea
Himalayan Honeysuckle - Leycesteria formosa
Raisin Tree - Hovenia dulcis
Borojo - Alibertia patinoi - Borojoa patinoi
Butterfly Pea - Clitoria ternatea
Honey Flower - Melianthus major
Ombu - Phytolacca dioica
Lion's Ear - Wild Dagga - Leonotis leonurus
Moringa - Miracle Tree - Moringa oleifera
Sea Daffodil - Pancratium maritimum
Spear Lily - Gymea - Doryanthes
Camphor tree - Cinnamomum camphora
Waterwheel - Aldrovanda vesiculosa
Flowering rush - Butomus umbellatus
Four o'clock - Marvel of Peru - Mirabilis jalapa
Dead Man’s Fingers - Decaisnea
Bitter Melon - Momordica charantia
Shoapnuts Tree - Shoapberry - Sapindus
Acerola - Malpighia
Monkey Ladder - Sea Heart - Entada gigas
Cherimoya - Annona cherimola
Caper - Capparis spinosa
Lithops - Living Stones
Chaste Tree - Vitex agnus-castus
Chilean Lantern Tree - Crinodendron hookerianum
Parrot's Beak - Lotus berthelotii
Water Hyacinth - Eichhornia crassipes
Guaiac Tree - Guaiacum officinale - Lignum-vitae
Mickey Mouse bush - Ochna serrulata
Cow's Udder - Solanum mammosum
Miracle fruit - Synsepalum dulcificum
Akebia - Akebia quinata
Chilean Firebush - Embothrium coccineum
Caesalpinia - Caesalpinia pulcherrima
Welwitschia - Welwitschia mirabilis
Saguaro - Carnegiea gigantea
Schisandra - Schisandra chinensis
Monarda - Bee balm - Bergamot
Tamarind - Tamarindus indica
Neomarica - Walking Iris
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Reseda - Mignonette
Paulownia - Paulownia tomentosa
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Blue Poppy - Meconopsis
Cannonball Tree - Couroupita guianensis
Tamarillo - Cyphomandra betacea
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Stevia - Stevia rebaudiana
Pachypodium
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Clematis
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Jade vine - Strongylodon macrobotrys
Sansevieria - Snake Plant
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Yareta - Azorella compacta
African tulip tree - Spathodea campanulata
Angel's Trumpets - Brugmansia
Achiote - Annato - Bixa orellana
Sausage Tree - Kigelia pinnata
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Firewheel Tree - Stenocarpus sinuatus
Bat Flower - Tacca
Snake gourd - Trichosanthes cucumerina
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Pickerel Weed - Pontederia
Argan - Argania spinosa
Astilbe - False Goats Beard
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Sweet Box - Sarcococca
Christmas Cactus - Schlumbergera
Foxtail Lily - Eremurus
Rue - Ruta graveolens
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Rose of Jericho - Anastatica hierochuntica
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Calico Flower - Aristolochia
Daylily - Hemerocallis
Contorted hazel - Corylus avellana Contorta
Torch Ginger - Etlingera elatior
Mistletoe - Viscum album
Devil´s claw - Harpagophytum procumbens
Teasel - Dipsacus
Pampas grass - Gynerium argenteum - Cortaderia Selloanna
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Coral Tree - Erythrina crista-galli
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Narcissus - Daffodil
Mimosa pudica - Sensitive Plant
Boxwood - Buxus sempervirens
Firethorn - Pyracantha
Star of Bethlehem - Ornithogalum
Cosmos
Muscari - Grape Hyacinth
Papyrus - Cyperus papyrus
Zinnia
Honeysuckle - Lonicera
Passiflora - Passion Flower
Calendula - Marigold
Lupine - Lupinus
Canna - Indian Shot
Witch Hazel - Hamamelis
Oak - Quercus
Brunsvigia - Candelabra Flower
Tree peony - Paeonia suffruticosa
Olive - Olea europaea
Cornflower - Centaurea cyanus
Desert rose - Adenium obesum
Oleander - Nerium Oleander
Abutilon
Sweet Pea - Lathyrus odoratus
Chaenomeles - Flowering Quince
Forsythia
Amaryllis - Hippeastrum
Butchers broom - Ruscus aculeatus
Bay Laurel - Laurus nobilis
Gloriosa
Bamboo
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Artichoke - Cynara scolymus
Clivia - Clivia Miniata
Dipladenia - Dipladenia sanderii
Date palm - Phoenix dactylifera
Peach - Prunus persica
Almond - Prunus amygdalus
Willow - Salix
Pomegranate - Punica granatum
Protea cynaroides
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Primula - Primerose
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Syringa Vurgaris - Lilac
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