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COCCOLOBA uvifera

Image of Coccoloba uvifera

Carol Cloud Bailey

Family

Polygonaceae

Botanical Name

COCCOLOBA uvifera

Plant Common Name

Sea Grape

General Description

Seagrape brings to mind sand, sun, and beaches, which is its native habitat from Florida to the Caribbean and South America. It can grow into a multi-trunked tree or sprawling shrub, depending on site conditions. Its leaves are large and circular with a rounded cleft at the base. Leaf color is dull green, often with red veins, and new leaves are often red-bronze. Its fragrant flowers are inconspicuous, ivory-colored and appear on stalked spikes. Plants are dioecious, meaning that male and female flowers appear on separate plants. Female plants produce elongated clusters of acidic, edible fruit that turn from green to purple-red.

Seagrapes are easy-to-grow in frost free locations, tolerant of most perfectly drained soils and very tolerant of salt, heat and drought. They are lovely in containers, and if container-grown can be moved into protected locations during the cold season. Avoid shearing seagrapes, large leaves never recover and are ugly when cut.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 9

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H2, 24

  • Plant Type

    Tree

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    20'-50' / 6.1m - 15.2m

  • Width

    20'-30' / 6.1m - 9.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Late Spring, Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer, Early Fall

  • Native To

    Southeastern United States, Caribbean, Central America, South America

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Pollution, Drought, Salt, Soil Compaction

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Oval/Rounded

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    White

  • Fruit Color

    Red, Purple, Yellow Green

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Red, Olive, Bronze

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Red, Olive

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Red, Olive, Bronze

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Red, Olive, Bronze

  • Bark Color

    Red, Tan, Brown

  • Bark Color Modifier

    Multi-Color

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    Yes

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Container, Edible, Feature Plant, Fruit / Fruit Tree, Hedges, Screening / Wind Break, Shade Trees, Street Trees, Topiary / Bonsai / Espalier, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes