Amyris elemifera (Torchwood)

Torchwood

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Description

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Amyris elemifera (Torchwood) is a small slender tree or large shrub, 10 to 15 feet (ca. 457 cm) in height but can reach 22 feet (6.71 m) under ideal conditions. It has a dense rounded crown with low vertical branches. The smooth gray bark becomes rough with furrows and plates as the tree ages. The light, glossy, green leaves are opposite or sub opposite. Also, the leaves have 3 to 5 leaflets. In addition, the leaflets are ovate to Lancelot.  The long pointed tip and 1 to 3 inches (ca. 8 cm) long.

In addition, its tiny, white, semi-showy and aromatic flowers are borne in erect branched clusters. These blooms attract butterflies. The aromatic and edible purplish-black berries measure about 1/4 inch (10.16 cm) in diameter. The berries contain a single brown seed; used for propagation. Birds and mammals eat the fruits. Also, some plant parts have medicinal properties. The green wood is resinous and by fraying the ends one can make a torch. Hence, the common name. Twigs can burn as incense.

Torchwood grows in moist well-drained sandy soils with an organic top layer. Amyris elemifera (Torchwood) is an attractive small plant for coastal area gardens or parks. Or it can be a hedge as a buffer. It is an attractive specimen for a native plant garden.

Additional information

Common Name

Torchwood, Sea Torchwood

Florida Native

Yes, FL Native

Origin

South Florida, West Indies, Central America & The Bahamas

Flowering Season

Spring-Summer

Flower Color

White

Salt Tolerance

Low Salt Tolerance

Drought Tolerance

Moderate Drought Tolerance

Growth Rate

Very Slow Growth Rate

Light Requirements

Full Sun

Shape

N/A

Plant Type

N/A

Gallons

25 gal., 50 gal., 65 gal., 100 gal., 200 gal., 300 gal.