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Gaultheria mucronata - (L.f.)Hook.&Arn.

Common Name Prickly heath
Family Ericaceae
USDA hardiness 5-9
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Open wet Nothfagus and Drimys forest, dominant or co-dominant with Chiliotrichum in shrub communities fringing forests above high water mark and in transition to swamps and bogs from sea level to 700m
Range S. America - S. Chile, S. Argentina.
Edibility Rating    (4 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care (info)
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Gaultheria mucronata Prickly heath


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Cillas
Gaultheria mucronata Prickly heath
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Penarc

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of shrub
Gaultheria mucronata is an evergreen Shrub growing to 1.5 m (5ft) by 1.2 m (4ft in).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 6. It is in leaf all year, in flower from May to June, and the seeds ripen from October to December. The species is dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). and is pollinated by Insects. The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid soils and can grow in very acid soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Arbutus mucronata. Pernettya mucronata. P. speciosa.

Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Ground Cover; Hedge;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit
Edible Uses:

Fruit - raw or cooked[177]. The lilac-coloured fruit does not look tremendously edible, and the texture is somewhat like polystyrene - but the fruit of some forms is juicy, almost melts in the mouth, has a very pleasant slightly sweet flavour and makes a very good dessert fruit[K]. The fruit is up to 12mm in diameter[200].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


None known

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Hedge  Hedge

The plant can be used to make a low hedge[29]. A good ground cover plant for a sunny position, forming dense thickets[197]. They are best spaced about 60cm apart each way[208]. Plants can be cut back in the spring if they are becoming too lanky and open in growth[208].

Special Uses

Ground cover  Hedge  Hedge

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Requires a light well-drained lime-free soil[11]. Requires a moist acid soil according to another report[184]. Prefers a sunny position[11] but succeeds in light shade though it fruits less well in such a position[182]. A very hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -20°c[184]. Plants spread quite freely, forming thickets by means of suckers[182]. Plants sometimes have hermaphrodite flowers but are usually dioecious[208] and at least one male plant is required for every 5 or 6 females if fruit is required. A very ornamental shrub, there are many named varieties[182]. 'Davis's Hybrids' is said to be hermaphrodite[182]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[200].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Propagation

The seed requires a period of cold stratification. Pre-chill for 4 - 10 weeks and surface sow in a lime-free compost in a shady part of the greenhouse and keep moist[78]. The seed usually germinates well, usually within 1 - 2 months at 20°c, but the seedlings are liable to damp off. Watering them with care and making sure they get ample ventilation will reduce this risk. Watering them with a garlic infusion can help to prevent damping off[K]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are about 25mm tall and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter[K]. Plant them out in late spring or early summer. The seedlings are susceptible to spring frosts and so it might be wise to give them some protection in their first spring or two outdoors.. Cuttings of half-ripe wood 3 - 6cm long, July/August in a frame in a shady position. They form roots in late summer or spring[78]. A good percentage usually take. Division in spring just before new growth begins. 'Drop' the plants 12 months earlier by digging them up and replanting them deeper in the soil so that the branches are buried and can form roots. This works best in a sandy soil[78]. It is best to pot up the divisions and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in the greenhouse until they are established. Plant them out in the summer. Layering in September/October. Takes 12 months[78].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Argentina, Australia, Chile, South America, Tasmania,

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Gaultheria adenothrix Shrub0.3 8-11  LMFSM304
Gaultheria antipodaSnowberryShrub1.2 8-11  LMFSM20 
Gaultheria appressaWhite WaxberryShrub2.0 -  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria cumingiana Shrub3.0 9-11  LMSM22 
Gaultheria depressaMountain SnowberryShrub0.1 8-11  LMSNM203
Gaultheria fragrantissimaFragrant WintergreenShrub1.0 8-11  LMFSM222
Gaultheria griffithianum Shrub1.8 -  LMSNM20 
Gaultheria hispidaSnowberryShrub0.9 8-11  LMSM21 
Gaultheria hispidulaCreeping SnowberryShrub0.1 5-9 FLMSMWe414
Gaultheria humifusaAlpine Wintergreen, Alpine spicywintergreenShrub0.1 6-9  LMSNM403
Gaultheria insana Shrub0.5 5-9  LMHSNM11 
Gaultheria japonicaCreeping SnowberryShrub0.1 5-9 FLMSMWe413
Gaultheria macrostigma Shrub0.5 7-10  LMSM203
Gaultheria myrsinoides Shrub0.2 8-11  LMSNM203
Gaultheria nummularioides Shrub0.1 8-11  LMSNM203
Gaultheria ovatifoliaMountain Checkerberry, Western teaberryShrub0.2 5-9  LMFSM303
Gaultheria procumbensCheckerberry, Eastern teaberry, Teaberry, Creeping WintergreenShrub0.2 3-6 MLMFSDM434
Gaultheria pumila Shrub0.1 6-9 SLMSNM20 
Gaultheria pumila leucocarpa Shrub0.2 6-9  LMSNM203
Gaultheria pyroliifolia Shrub0.2 5-9 SLMFSM20 
Gaultheria pyroloides Shrub0.3 5-9  LMSM30 
Gaultheria rigida Shrub0.0 -  LMFSM10 
Gaultheria sclelophylla Shrub0.0 -  LMFSM20 
Gaultheria shallonShallon, SalalShrub1.2 6-9 MLMFSNDM523
Gaultheria trichophylla Shrub0.1 7-10  LMSNM203
Gaultheria x wisleyensis Shrub1.0 5-9  LMFSM203

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

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Expert comment

Author

(L.f.)Hook.&Arn.

Botanical References

1169

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

mootube   Sun Mar 19 2006

This URL talks about the conflicting messages that can be found about Pernettya. Having recently tried 'Bell's Seedling', I found the berries to have a very nice and original taste so I'll definitely be growing these and would recommend anyone to do the same. I would though, rather have read the controversy around Pernettya before I'd sampled it.

mootube   Sun Mar 19 2006

http://www.paghat.com/pernettya_yum.html

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