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Native Trees & Shrubs of Florida

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

On this page - Rouge Plant, Shiny-leaved Wild Coffee,
Velvetleaf Wild Coffee, Inkberry, Shiny Blueberry,
Florida Rosemary, Sabal Palm, Coconut Palm, Saw Palmetto,
Beach Creeper

Click any image for a larger version

Rouge plant flower (Rivina humilis L.) Rouge plant (Rivina humilis L.)

Rouge Plant - Rivina humilis L.

Family - Petiveriaceae

Habitat - Hammocks, ruderal

Description - Native Florida shrub to near 6 feet, with only the very base being somewhat woody in nature. Leaves are alternate with distinctly wavy margins.

Flower - Clusters of pinkish-white flowers on spikes throughout the year, followed by the bright red berries.

Wild Coffee (Psychotria nervosa) image

Shiny-leaved Wild Coffee - Psychotria nervosa

Family - Rubiaceae

Habitat - Common in moist areas of coastal, oak and hardwood hammocks. Endemic to Florida within the continental U.S.

Description - Native shrub, 4 - 10 feet in height with elliptical to narrowly obovate dark green shiny leaves, 4 - 6 inches long with veins impressed into upper surface.

Small white flower in clusters produced at leaf axils, fruit is 3/8 inch red or yellow berry that closely resembles the true coffee bean.

Short leaf wild coffee plant (Psychotria sulzneri) Short leaf wild coffee, leaf close-up

Velvet-leafed wild coffee - Psychotria sulzneri

Family - Rubiaceae

Habitat - Wet to moist Hammocks, Flatwoods

Description - Native Florida shrub to 8 feet tall, stems green to reddish-brown, leaves are opposite, 4-7 inches long, oblanceolate with entire margins and blue-green color. Clusters of small white flowers, fruit is a small red berry (drupe) 1/4 inch in diameter.

Gallberry (Ilex glabra) image Inkberry (Ilex glabra) flower detail image

Inkberry, Gallberry, Appalachian tea - Ilex glabra

Family - Aquifoliaceae

Habitat -  Moist to wet Flatwoods, Sand scrub, Hammocks, Bogs and Swamps

Description - Native perennial shrub, 4 - 6 feet tall, the leathery leaves are 1 1/2 to 3 1/2 inches long, simple, alternately arranged with smooth or finely toothed margin, obovate to elliptic.

Flower is greenish white, single at leaf axils followed by round 1/4 inch shiny black fruits that persist through winter.

Inkberry leaves are browsed by Marsh rabbits and White tailed-deer, the fruits are an important food source for Raccoon, Coyote, Opossum and many birds, including Quail and Wild turkey, especially when other food  sources are scarce.

Image - Shiny Blueberry (Vaccinium myrsinites)

Shiny Blueberry - Vaccinium myrsinites

Family - Ericaceae

Habitat - Pinelands, Flatwoods

Description - Native shrub, 1-2 feet high, spreads from rhizomes. Leaves alternate, obovate to elliptic, leathery, 1/4 to 3/4 inches long with entire or finely serrate margins.

Flower - Small urn shaped, pink to white in spring 1/4 inch +/-. Fruit is a small red to black drupe.

Florida Rosemary (Ceratiola ericoides)

Florida Rosemary, Sandhill Rosemary - Ceratiola ericoides

Family - Empetraceae

Habitat - Sandhill, Sand Pine Scrub, Oak Scrub

Description - Perennial, Subshrub, Shrub, Forb/Herb, up to 6 feet in height with many stiffly erect stems. Leaf 1/2 inch, needle-like, opposite to whorled. Older individuals often have larger branches laying on ground.

Flower - Tiny, bronze to yellowish-brown, produced in clusters at leaf axils.

Sabal Palm (Sabal palmetto) Florida State tree Sabal Palm, Cabbage Palm - Florida state tree

Sabal Palm, Cabbage Palm - Sabal Palmetto

Habitat - Coastal forests, hardwood hammocks, moist to wet flatwoods, river floodplains, river and creek banks.

Description - Native. This tall (90 plus ft.) hardy palm is the Florida state tree. Leaves (fronds) are attached to the tree on long petioles which clasp the trunk, overall length can exceed 10 feet. Dead fronds persist on tree until a strong wind snaps the stalk or they gradually deteriorate leaving behind the "boot", the forked base of the leaf stem.

Flowers are yellowish-white on many branched inflorescence produced at the crown, followed by reddish-brown round berries a 1/2 inch or less in diameter that turn black when mature.

Many birds dine on the berries of the cabbage palm, as do small mammals. Bees and wasps are constantly at the flowers.

Coconut Palm (Cocos nucifera L).jpg

Coconut Palm - Cocos nucifera

Family - Arecaceae

Habitat - Coastal strand, riverbanks, cultivated worldwide.

Description - Not native, introduced. Although widely believed to have originated in S. America, the actual origin of the coconut has long been a subject of dispute.  Many varieties have been developed, including dwarfs. Grows to over 80 feet high with its leaves reaching 18 to 19 feet in length. The coconut palm has long been used as a source of fiber, food, nut oil and building materials.

Flower - Inflorescence is enclosed in a spathe to near 6 feet in length with profuse creamy yellow to orange flowers.

Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens) image

Saw Palmetto - Serenoa repens

Family - Arecaceae

Habitat - Pine flatwoods, pine scrub, oak scrub, oak hammocks, maritime hammocks, prairies.

Description - Native. Palmate leaves up to 3 ft. in width growing from horizontal stems and rhizomes, overall height is variable dependant on the type of habitat, common at 2 to 10 feet and can attain heights over 20 feet.
Leaf stems are edged with sharp spines resembling saw teeth give this native plant its common name.

Fragrant flowers are yellowish-white on densely-branched inflorescences 2 feet or more in length.

Fruit is green to yellowish, changing to orange then darkening to a deep purple/black when ripe and provides forage for many animals including Whitetail deer, Black bear, feral pigs and the Gopher tortoise.

Beach-creeper, Golden-creeper, Coughbush - Ernodea littoralis

Family - Rubiaceae

Habitat - Coastal areas - Dunes and scrub in central and south Florida.

Description - Low growing (less than 3 feet) sprawling native shrub, stems root where they make contact with the ground. Leaves are linear to lanceolate, opposite, shiny green to yellowish-green 1 inch to 1 1/2 inches long.

Flower - Small (1/2 inch) tubular flowers with 4 re-curving petals, may be white to pinkish or yellowish-white, produced year-round. Fruit is a single seeded, yellow berry.

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

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