Inkberry

Scaevola plumieri

 

General Landscape Uses: Accent shrub in open coastal areas.

Availability: Native plant nurseries.

Description: Small shrub with succulent leaves and trailing stems. Leaves thick, dark green.

Dimensions: About 2-5 feet in height. Usually broader than tall.

Growth Rate: Slow.

Range: Monroe County Keys north to Brevard, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties; West Indies, Mexico, South America, Galapagos and Old World tropics. Rare in the Monroe County Keys; now migrating to the north along the coasts.

Habitats: Beach dunes, coastal strand and coastal grasslands.

Soils: Moist, well-drained sandy or limestone soils, without humus.

Nutritional Requirements: Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Frontline; grows in direct salt wind but away from constant salt spray.

Drought Tolerance: High; does not require any supplemental water once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: White to pinkish white.

Flower Characteristics: Semi-showy. One-sided, appearing like a flower cut in half.

Flowering Season: All year; peak in summer.

Fruit: Black ovoid drupe. All year.

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides significant food and moderate amounts of cover for wildlife.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from seed and division (rooted stems).

Comments: It is listed as threatened by the state of Florida.

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