Surinam Cherry
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Surinam Cherry
ntroduced Photo: Dinesh Valke
Common name: Surinam Cherry, Barbados cherry, Brazilian cherry, Cayenne cherry, Florida cherry, French cherry
Botanical name: Eugenia uniflora    Family: Myrtaceae (Bottlebrush family)

Native to tropical America, Surinam Cherry is a large shrub or small tree with a conical form, growing slowly to 8 m in height. The leaves are glossy green, up to 4 cm long, and new foliage has a beautiful copper color. Long-stalked flowers, borne singly or as many as 4 together in leaf axils, have 4 delicate, recurved, white petals and a tuft of 50-60 prominent white stamens with pale-yellow anthers. The fragrant white flowers mature into fruits which are 7- to 8-ribbed, up to 2 cm in diameter, and ripen from yellow to red. The flavor ranges from sweet to sour, depending on the cultivar and level of ripeness. Surinam Cherry is often used in gardens as a hedge or screen. The fruit is high in Vitamin C, and its predominant food use in most of the places it occurs is as a flavoring and base for jams and jellies.

Identification credit: Ajinkya Gadave Photographed in Maharashtra & Bangalore.

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