Fruits & Vegetables

Brush cherry

Botanical Name: Syzygium australe
Family: Myrtaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Myrtales
Genus: Syzygium
Species: S. australe

*Eugenia australis J.C.Wendl. ex Link
*Eugenia myrtifolia Sims nom. illeg.
*Eugenia simmondsiae F.M.Bailey
*Jambosa australis (J.C.Wendl. ex Link) DC.
*Jambosa myrtifolia Heynh.
*Jambosa thozetiana F.Muell.
*Myrtus australis (J.C.Wendl. ex Link) Spreng

Common Names: Brush cherry, Scrub cherry, Creek lilly-pilly, Creek satinash, and watergum.

Habitat: Brush cherry is a rainforest tree native to eastern Australia. The species occurs in coastal regions in Queensland and New South Wales, northwards from Batemans Bay.

Description: Brush cherry is an evergreen Shrub growing to 5 m (16ft 5in).But it can attain a height of up to 35 m with a trunk diameter of 60 cm. In cultivation, this species is usually a small to medium-sized tree with a maximum height of only 18m.

The leaves are opposite, simple, lanceolate from 4–8 cm long. Flowers are white and in clusters. The dark pink to red fruits are edible.


This species is commonly confused with magenta cherry and the blue lilly pilly. However, the brush cherry has a paler trunk.

Brush cherry is commonly cultivated in gardens in eastern Australia, mostly as shorter, shrub-like cultivars such as “Aussie Boomer”, “Aussie Compact”, “Birdsville”, “Bush Christmas”, “Minipilly” and “Tiny Trev”. These are especially popular as hedges.

Brush cherry is adaptive to grow both in sun and shade. During winter it is advisable to keep the bonsai indoors and place it in a shallow tray filled a layer of gravel with water. This method provides extra moisture around the tree and in turn reduces the amount of moisture lost to modern heating systems. Brush cherry noticeably grows well in South Florida as it grows on limestone soils as an understory plant. Ideally brush cherry grows well in open spaces and sunny environment with less or no attention given to them while they grow. For any plant to grow healthy and beautiful fertilizing is a very necessary process. As the bonsai grows in a very small amount of soil it is necessary to keep a check on the health and fertility of the soil and keep fueling the soil with essential supplies periodically to ensure a healthy growth. While yes, fertilization is necessary one needs to understand the over exposure to fertilizers will lead to dire results. This may adversely affect the growth of the plant and sometimes even lead to dire results.

Edible Uses:The pleasantly sour fruit are also eaten fresh or cooked. The fruit can be used to make jams and jellies.


Health Benefits: The neutritional value of Brus cherry is very high.

Other Uses: This species has been adopted by Coffs Harbour City Council as the City’s floral emblem. Outside Australia, brush cherry is used as a subject for bonsai.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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