Plant Listings

Varronia bahamensis

Varronia bahamensis Urb.

Former Name: Cordia bahamensis

Common Names: Granny Bush, Cocobey


Habit: Varronia bahamensis grows as a shrub to small tree up to four meters in height. The bark is black with whitish lenticels. The leaves are arranged alternately and are linear to elliptic in shape. The leaves are up to ten centimeters long (usually shorter) with a leaf margin that ranges from entire to slightly toothed. The surfaces of the leaves are covered with scabrous scales.

The flowers are arranged in heads. The calyx has five sepals that are fused into a cup that is covered with hairs. The corolla has five white petals that are fused into a cup. There are five stamens that are attached to the rim of the corolla. The ovary is superior. The fruit is a berry that turns red at maturity.

Habitat: Varronia bahamensis grows in Dry Broadleaf Evergreen Formations (Coppice): primarily in shrublands as well as in Pine Woodlands.

Distribution in Bahamas/Globally: Varronia bahamensis occurs on all islands in the Bahamian Archipelago as well as southern Florida and Cuba.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Varronia bahamensis does not have a known medicinal use in the Bahamian Archipelago. It has been introduced into the horticultural trade. It is attractive to birds and butterflies an in the northern Bahamas it attracts the Atala Butterfly.