Economic Botany

, Volume 32, Issue 4, pp 353–359 | Cite as

Brazilian pepper—Its impact on people, animals and the environment

  • Julia F. Morton


Native to Brazil,Schinus terebinthifolius Raddi, of the family Anacardiaceae, has been commonly cultivated in Florida for over 50 years as a dooryard ornamental. Use of its sprays of showy red fruits for Christmas decoration gave rise to the popular misnomer “Florida holly.” Too late it was found to become a large, spreading tree; aggressive seedlings began springing up near and far. Jungles ofSchinus have crowded out native vegetation over vast areas of Florida and the Bahamas, as in all the islands of Hawaii. When in bloom, the tree is a major source of respiratory difficulty and dermatitis; the fruits, in quantity, intoxicate birds and cause fatal trauma in four-footed animals. The abundant nectar yields a spicy commercial honey and beekeepers are opposed to eradication programs.


Economic Botany Cardol Green Berry Fatal Trauma Schinus Terebinthifolius 
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Copyright information

© New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY 10458 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julia F. Morton
    • 1
  1. 1.Morton Colectanea University of MiamiCoral Gables

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