Arbutus unedo Rubra

Red Strawberry Tree

A form of the native Killarney strawberry tree or caithne, Arbutus unedo f. rubra differs from the species only in having deep pink flowers. A small to medium-sized, slow-growing evergreen tree or large shrub, it bears fruit rather like a strawberry to look at, though not in taste. These are borne at the same time as the flowers, in late autumn, taking a year to mature. Glossy, dark green leaves with serrated edges and attractive cinnamon-brown bark, peeling in older specimens; the gnarled habit is also attractive. Useful nectar source for bees, and good for permaculture plantings. Tolerant of salt, the red strawberry tree can be used to stabilise coastal soils, for coastal shelter-belts, and for permaculture planting. For milder areas, although older specimens are hardier.

Site: Tolerates exposure, including coastal exposure
Soil: Well-drained acid to neutral soils, including poor soils
Position: Full sun or partial shade
Season of Interest: Spring, summer, autumn, winter
Hardiness: Half-hardy
Height: 16-33ft (5-10m) Spread: 16-33ft (5-10m)
Type | Size: Pot | 9cm
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