Myrcianthes fragrans

Myrcianthes fragrans (Sw.) McVaugh

Common Names: Pale Stopper, Cherry, Twin Berry, Twin Berry Stopper, Naked Wood

Family: Myrtaceae

Habit: Myrcianthes fragrans grows as a large shrub to small tree up to 15 m in height with a trunk to 25 cm in diameter.  The bark is grey-white and peels to reveal an orange-red under bark.  The leaves are arranged oppositely, to 5 cm long and 3 cm wide, are oblong to elliptic shape with a rounded or retuse leaf apex and entire or sometimes notched margin.  The leaf surface is pellucid punctate that gives it a slightly rough appearance.

The flowers are arranged in cymes that produce 3-7 flowers. The calyx, corolla and androecium are fused together at their base to form a hypanthium. There are 4 calyx lobes that are greenish and 4 corolla lobes that are white.  There are numerous stamens.  The ovary is inferior and has 2 locules with numerous seeds.  The fruit is a berry that turns bright orange-red at maturity.

Habitat: Myrcianthes fragrans grows in exposed areas of Dry Broadleaf Evergreen Formation -Shrublands (scrublands).

Distribution: Myrcianthes fragrans occurs throughout the entire Bahamian Archipelago as well as Florida, the Caribbean region and Central and South America.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Myrcianthes fragrans has been used medicinally in the Bahamas to treat gastrointestinal problems.

Myrcianthes fragrans is used in the horticultural industry for its distinctive bark and showy fruits as a medium sized tree.