Alphabetical Plant Listing

Coccoloba uvifera (Seagrape)

Seagrape, Seaside-grape, Sea Grape, Polygonum uvifera


Fast-growing, Coccoloba uvifera (Seagrape) is an evergreen, multi-stemmed, vase-shaped shrub or small tree grown for its attractive foliage and showy fruits. The leathery leaves are huge, 8-12 in. long (20-30 cm), round, shiny green with red midveins. They often turn bright crimson-red in the fall before falling. The new foliage emerges a lovely bronze color and contrasts nicely against the glossy dark green leaves. Blooming all year-round, with a peak in spring to early summer, inconspicuous creamy-white flowers emerge in clusters on foot-long racemes. They are followed by large, green to reddish-purple, edible grapes (on female trees) in early summer which ripen by early fall. The fruits have a sweet-sour flavor and are sometimes used to make jams and jellies. The bark is smooth, mottled with silver-gray, and brown. Seagrape provides food and cover for wildlife. The flowers attract butterflies, bees, and other pollinators. The grapes are devoured by birds and many species of wildlife. Native to Florida, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean, Seagrape is an excellent accent plant with its picturesque twisting trunk. It can be pruned into a dense hedge, screen, or windbreak. Seagrape is excellent for seaside landscapes since it is highly tolerant of salt and drought. It is often planted to stabilize beach edges. Wind-resistant, Seagrape may be damaged by hurricanes, but sprouts back quickly.

  • Grows up to 10-50 ft. tall (3-15 m) and 3-30 ft. wide (1-9 m).
  • Performs best in full sun to partial shade in clay to sandy, well-drained soils. Plants should be well-watered until established. Highly drought tolerant, this plant is also tolerant of dry soils and adapts to a wide range of soil pH including alkaline. Excellent salt tolerance allows planting near the beach.
  • Keep an eye out for Seagrape borer which can kill branches and nipple gall which causes raised, red nipples on the upper leaf surface. Leaves take a long time to decompose, so plant where leaf litter is not a problem.
  • Pruning is required 2 or 3 times during the first 10 years after planting to train the multiple trunks, so they are well-attached to the tree. The tree will then perform well with little care.
  • Propagate by seed or by ground layering. Use a branch close to the ground and mound soil over it. The branch will develop roots and can be cut from the plant in 4-6 months.
  • Native to coastal beaches throughout tropical America and the Caribbean, including southern Florida, the Bahamas, the Greater and Lesser Antilles, and Bermuda.

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Requirements

Hardiness 9 – 11
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 10' – 50' (3m – 15m)
Spread 3' – 30' (90cm – 9m)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Southeast, Florida
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil, Salt
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Coastal Garden

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Konstantin Kopachinsky, Lindasj22, Greenseas, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 9 – 11
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 10' – 50' (3m – 15m)
Spread 3' – 30' (90cm – 9m)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Southeast, Florida
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil, Salt
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Coastal Garden

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