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On this page - Surinam Cherry, Chinese Tallow, African Rosemallow, Javanese Bishopwood

Surinam Cherry, Brazilian Cherry - Eugenia uniflora

Surinam cherry fruit Surinam cherry leaves

Family - Myrtaceae

Description - Introduced to Florida with origins in S. America. (Surinam, Guyana) Considered a Category 1 invasive by the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council.

Growing as a shrub or small tree to 25 feet, this plant has been used extensively in Florida landscaping and has escaped in to the wild in most, if not all, South Florida Counties.

Surinam cherry has bright, copper colored new leaves that are a shiny bright green when mature are simple, arranged opposite, mostly ovate sometimes ovate-lanceolate with entire margins and may have acute or almost rounded apices. Grows with a open, sparsely branched habit.

Flowers are on long stalks, small and white with 4 petals and many stamens and are produced from the leaf axils. Fruit is bright red or orange and looks like a small flattened pumpkin.

Chinese Tallow Tree - Sapium sebiferum

Chinese Tallow (Sapium sebiferum L) Chinese Tallow fruit (Sapium sebiferum L)

Family - Euphorbiaceae

Description - Introduced, category 1 invasive exotic. Fast growing deciduous perennial tree, 30 to 50 feet. Widely used in landscaping. Leaves are alternate with entire margins, broadly ovate with acuminate apices.

Commonly found in wet areas - low lying forests, freshwater swamps margins of rivers, lakes, ponds, creeks, and ditch banks. Can be found drier upland habitats as well.

Flower - Small yellow flowers on spikes to near 8 inches long. Fruit is a waxy three lobed capsule 1/2 inch in diameter.

African Rosemallow - Hibiscus acetosella

African Rosemallow (Hibiscus acetosella Welw. ex Hiern) African Rosemallow flower (Hibiscus acetosella Welw. ex Hiern)

Family - Malvaceae

Habitat - Ruderal, Wet Flatwoods

Description - Introduced annual or perennial shrub 2 - 5 feet tall, deep red-crimson leaves are alternate, 3 lobed deeply cut with serrate margins on long petioles. Flowers are pink to deep red, 3 - 5 inches across.

Javanese Bishopwood, Toog tree - Bischofia javanica

Bishopwood tree, Bischofia javanica Bishopwood leaf Bishopwood berries

Family - Euphorbiaceae

Habitat - Disturbed wetland sites, Cypress domes, Hardwood hammocks

Description - FLEPPC Category I Invasive exotic tree, introduced from Asia as an ornamental landscape tree & is now invading natural areas in South Florida where it alters/displaces native plant communities. Seeds are dispersed by birds that eat the fruit.

Height to 60 feet, leaves are on long petioles (stems), are compound with 3 leaflets & toothed margins, often with a bronze hue. Thrives in moist soil, flowers are in racemes at leaf axils, fruit is a small round brown/reddish brown to dark blue berry less than a 1/2'' in diameter, produced in large clusters. Sap is milky, as is typical of the Euphorbiaceae family.