Edible Garden Fruit Gardening Shrubs Trees

Strawberry Tree | An Attractive and Bountiful Ornamental

Strawberry Tree | An Attractive and Bountiful Ornamental

By Jplm – Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3447929

Arbutus unedo, commonly known as Strawberry Tree or Killarney Strawberry Tree, is a small deciduous tree (shrub) It originates from Southwestern Europe and is a member of the Ericaceae family. Strawberry trees showcase broadleaf dark evergreen oval leaves that provides year-round visual interest. Strawberry trees can be grown in USDA Hardiness Zones 7-10 and can reach a height and spread of 15-30 feet.  It naturally has a shrub shape but can be trained into a tree. The During early fall, the trees produce gorgeous light-pink and white flowers which generate small oblong reddish- orange, edible fruit (generally bland in flavor) which are widely used to produce delicious marmalades, jams, liqueurs and even wine. The fruit is also a favorite of certain wildlife animals such as deer and birds and pollinating insects adore the nectar rich flower blossoms.

Strawberry trees are slow growers. They prefer full sun to part shade and will benefit from well-draining, slightly acidic, average soil (they can also grow in clay soil provided its well-draining). They can tolerate some drought and coastal conditions when the plant is established. They will require regular watering during the first year to get the root established. Strawberry trees can readily be propagated by stem cuttings and layering. They can also be grown from seed but may take up to a year to get a viable transplant. Strawberry trees can suffer from a number of pests problems such as thrips, aphids, scales, borers, leaf miners and caterpillars.  Diseases such as leaf galls and spots, anthracnose and root diseases.

Strawberry trees would truly provide visual interest to any ornamental or edible gardens.

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