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Native Trees & Shrubs of Florida

Native Trees & Shrubs - 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

On this page - Pond Apple, Rusty Lyonia, Shiny Lyonia, Paradisetree, Red Mulberry, Deerberry, Chapman's Oak, Marlberry, Coco Plum, Varnishleaf, Dwarf Live Oak

Click any image for a larger version

Image - Pond Apple fruit(Annona glabra L.) Image - Pond Apple tree (Annona glabra L)

Pond Apple - Annona glabra

Family - Annonaceae

Habitat - Fresh water Swamps, Wet Forests, Edges of ponds and streams.

Description - Florida native tree. Although it can grow to over 40 feet in height, the Pond Apple is typically smaller. Leaves are leathery, alternate, simple with entire margins, shiny green with pointed apices (tips), leaf margins are generally reflexed upward forming a V from axis.

Flower - Creamy white to pale yellow, 7/8 inch across from triangular buds on short stalks. Pond Apple flowers from spring through summer. Fruit is egg to heart shaped to about 5 inches and is yellow with brown spots.

Image - Rusty Lyonia (Lyonia ferruginea)

Rusty Lyonia, Staggerbush - Lyonia ferruginea

Family - Ericaceae ( Heath family )

Habitat - Pine Flatwoods, Scrub

Description - Native shrub or small tree. Commonly 3 to 12 feet high, occasionally may grow to 20 feet or more. Typically grows with many crooked or contorted stems that have reddish brown, scaly, ridged bark. All parts of plant covered with a rusty brown pubescence, particularly new growth and underside of the 2-4 inch oblanceolate leaves.

Flower - Fragrant, white, urn or bell shaped in axillary clusters in spring, fruit is a five-sided ovoid brown capsule1/4 inch long.

Shiny Lyonia, Fetterbush - Lyonia lucida

Family - Ericaceae

Habitat - Found throughout Florida, prefers moist sites; Wet Flatwoods, margins of ponds, swamps & marshes,

Description - A sprawling evergreen shrub with long arching stems, averaging three to five feet tall, sometimes taller. Suckers from roots, forming dense thickets & making it difficult to traverse, hence the name Fetterbush. Leaves are broadly elliptic to almost lanceolate, shiny, dark green and 1-3 inches long, leaf margins are entire with a prominent vein that runs parallel with margins.

In spring, pale to deep pink urn shaped flowers are produced in clusters from leaf axils on previous seasons growth.

Image - Paradisetree (Simarouba glauca) Image - Paradisetree fruit (Simarouba glauca)

Paradisetree, Bitterwood - Simarouba glauca

Family - Simaroubaceae

Habitat - Coastal Hammocks

Description - Native tree with sparsely branched straight trunk to 50 feet tall. Leaves stiff, alternate, pinnately compound, 11-12 inches long with 10 to 14 elliptic to oval leaflets. Dark shiny green above, grey underneath. New growth is reddish.

Flower - Yellow to cream colored, in profuse terminal and/or axillary clusters. Fruit is a reddish oval drupe, just under an inch long, turning black when mature.

Image - Red Mulberry (Morus rubra L)

Red Mulberry - Morus rubra

Family - Moraceae

Habitat - Hammocks, Bottomland Forests, Upland Forests, Floodplains, Flatwoods.

Description - Native shrub or tree to 65 feet, typically with a low branching habit, irregular grey-brown bark sometimes orange tinged in young trees, bark becoming ridged in older trees.

Leaf form is variable, alternate, simple, margins serrate, may be un-lobed or deeply lobed, green above with a rough, scabrous texture, paler green and fuzzy on lower surface.

Flower - Pale green hanging catkins, 1-2 inches long. Fruit is a cylindrical, cluster of black drupes to 1 1/4 inch long, resembling blackberries.

Image - Deerberry (Vaccinium stamineum L)

Deerberry - Vaccinium stamineum

Family - Ericaceae

Habitat - Pinelands, Hammocks

Description - Native Florida shrub or a small tree. 10-15 feet tall with an equal spread. Leaves are alternate, simple, elliptic to obovate with entire margins, 1-3 inches long, commonly increasing in size toward tips of branches.

Flower - White, campanulate, (bell shaped) from leaf axils on long stalks, with the numerous yellow stamens extending past the corolla. Fruit a berry, whitish blue to deep purple when mature.

Image - Chapman's oak (Quercus chapmanii) Image - Chapmans oak - Acorns

Chapman's Oak - Quercus chapmanii

Family - Fagaceae

Habitat - Sand Pine Scrub, Oak Scrub

Description - Native perennial tree/shrub. Although it can occasionally grow to tree-like proportions (30-50 feet with a 8-10 inch trunk) is commonly found as a shrub in dry scrub. Leaves are alternate, simple, somewhat variable in form; elliptic to obovate or spatulate with entire or shallowly lobed margins. Upper surface dark green, shiny, lower surface slightly pubesent.  

Flower - In spring - male flower a catkin, female inconspicuous, produced singly or in pairs.

Image - Marlberry (Ardisia escallonioides) and fruit

Marlberry - Ardisia escallonioides

Family - Myrsinaceae

Habitat - Coastal Hammocks, Inland Hammocks, Thickets

Description - Native shrub or small tree to 20 feet or more in south Florida, more commonly 12-15 feet. Narrow crown, taller than broad, slender trunk and branches with thin, pale grey bark. Leaves are a shiny dark green above, paler dull green below, elliptic, alternate, 4-8 inches long, margins entire. 

Flower - Fragrant, creamy white throughout the year, produced in terminal clusters. Fruit is a fleshy drupe, 1/2 inch or less, deep red to black.

Image - Coco Plum (Chrysobalanus icaco L) Image - Coco Plum fruit

Coco Plum - Chrysobalanus icaco

Family - Chrysobalanaceae

Habitat - Coastal swamps, coastal scrub, bay swamps, cypress domes.

Description - Native shrub or small tree up to 15 feet in height. Leaves are 2 -3 inches, evergreen, simple, alternate, broadly elliptical to nearly round with smooth entire margins on short petioles.

Flowers white, (may be pink tinged) 1/4 inch borne on short irregularly branched clusters near ends of branches. Fruit is 1 to 2 inches in diameter, dark purple to nearly black at maturity and has a waxy appearance.

Image - Varnishleaf (Dodonaea viscosa) Image - Varnishleaf fruit

Varnishleaf, Florida Hopbush - Dodonaea viscosa

Family - Sapindaceae

Habitat - Coastal Strand, Coastal Hammocks

Description - Native small tree or more commonly a shrub to 10 feet high, occasionally taller. Leaves alternate, obovate, shiny yellowish-green and sticky, 3-6 inches long.

Flower - Yellowish-green in small terminal clusters, followed by green to pinkish winged capsules.

Image - Dwarf Live Oak and flowers

Dwarf Live Oak - Quercus minima

Family - Fagaceae

Habitat - Pinelands, Scrubby flatwoods, Wet flatwoods, Sandhill

Description - Native low growing shrub, sub-shrub, rarely exceeding 3 feet, common at 16-18 inches or less.

Leaves alternate, simple, evergreen, leathery, variable size and shape, 1 to 4 inches long, shiny green above, lower surface (usually) pubescent.

Flower - Early spring, Male- Yellow-green catkins 2-3 inches long, Female - small, inconspicuous in leaf axils.

Native Trees & Shrubs 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

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