Ochrosia elliptica

Ochrosia elliptica Labill.

Common Names: Blood Horn, Pokosola, Lady of the House, Mangrove Ochrosia, Scarlet Wedge Apple, New Caledonia Tree, Berry Wood Tree

Family: Apocynaceae

Habit: Ochrosia elliptica grows as succulent shrub up to 6 m in height.  The leaves are arranged in whorls, obovate to oblinear, to 2o cm long, 7 cm wide, and clustered at branch tips. The leaves have an obtuse to retuse leaf apex and an entire margin. The adaxial leaf surface glabrous, glossy. Vegetation produces a milky sap. The secondary veins distinct.

The complete, perfect, actinomorphic flowers are arranged in corymbose panicles arising in leaf axils.  The calyx has 5 unfused, greenish sepals.  The corolla has 5 white to yellow petals that are fused forming a tube with the lobes overlapping at their base to one side forming a pinwheel shape. There are 5 stamens fused to the corolla tube.  The ovary is superior and has two locules and many ovules.  The fruit is a fleshy follicle (in pairs) that turns bright red at maturity.  The seeds have tufts of hairs at one end to assist in dispersal.

Habitat: Ochrosia elliptica grows in Human Altered environments (yards, gardens, disturbed and abandoned fields).

Distribution: Ochrosia elliptica is NOT native to the Lucayan Archipelago. It is native to Australia and the southwestern Pacific.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Ochrosia elliptica is not used medicinally in the Bahamian Archipelago.

The fruits and milky sap are poisonous! Do not ingest or get on your skin!

Ochrosia elliptica is beginning to occur in semi natural areas and disturbed coastlines on New Providence and should be treated as a potential INVASIVE species in Dunes.