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Ugni



Ugni is a genus of about 10 species of plants in the myrtle family Myrtaceae, native to western South America and Central America from the Valdivian temperate rain forests of southern Chile north to southern Mexico, and also the Juan Fernandez Islands off Chile. They are shrubs with evergreen foliage, reaching 1-5 m tall. The leaves are opposite, oval, 1-4 cm long and 0.2-2.5 cm broad, entire, glossy dark green, with a spicy scent if crushed. The flowers are drooping, 1-2 cm diameter with four or five white or pale pink petals and numerous short stamens; the fruit is a small red or purple berry 1 cm diameter.

The scientific name derives from the Mapuche Native American name Uni for U. molinae. The genus was formerly often included in either Myrtus or Eugenia; it is distinguished from these by the drooping flowers with stamens shorter than the petals

Uses

Ugni molinae is grown as an ornamental plant for its edible, strawberry-flavoured berries. Some commercial "strawberry flavouring" is made from this species, not from strawberries.

External links

Ugni molinae in Encyclopedia of the Chilean Flora

Ugni molinae at ChileBosque

Flora of Chile: Ugni

Trees and shrubs of Ecuador: Ugni

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Ugni


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