Locust Berry
Byrsonima lucida

Locust Berry

Locust Berry is a three to five foot shrub in the everglades rockland region yet may reach 35 feet in the lower Florida Keys along the waters edge. This seems to be a varietal difference. Seed source will determine how tall it will grow. Locust berry can be limbed up to make a nice tree with an interesting, lichen covered trunk.

The flowers occur from April thru June with the fruit ripening by the end of June.  The mass of white, changing to pink, then to red flowers are incredible when in full bloom in April.  Birds like the pea sized brown berries, which are edible to humans too. It is a larval food of the Florida Dusky Wing butterfly.

Locust berry is not very tolerant of salt. Once established in rich soil, it needs no additional watering.

Mix the small variety with lignum vitae, chapman’s cassia, quailberry, golden creeper, thatch palms, Florida privet and other rockland plants.  The tall variety can be used the same way or as an accent tree that will put your neighbor’s flowering exotics to shame. Or blend it in with other coastal trees like green buttonwood, gumbo limbo, myrsine, marlberry, pigeon plum, black mangrove and wild dilly.

Locust berry is cold tolerant up to middle Palm Beach County.