What tree has bright blue berry covered by pink pod?

flutterwingsOctober 22, 2008

Can anyone identify the following tree, located in West Jefferson, NC (Boone area)? It has a striking cyan-colored berry covered by a pink cup/pod that opens forming a 5 petaled 'flower'? Leaves and size of tree are similar to dogwood. Mystery tree was growing at the edge of the woods behind a farmhouse.

Here is a link that might be useful: Branch with blue berries and pink pods

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dogridge(7b nc)

Maybe porcelain berry?

    Bookmark   October 22, 2008 at 9:08PM
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Dibbit(z7b SC)

Try harlequin glorybower, Clerodendron trichtomum(?). It is an African native, which is grown mostly for the berries, and which escapes into the wild with ease.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2008 at 9:42PM
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Ralph Whisnant(z7b-8 NC)

Dibbit, you are right. Dave's Garden has pictures of C. trichotomum including one with the the seed that looks just like the one posted above. This Clerodendrum is native to Japan and China and is hardy in zone 7. When they bloom in the fall, they are a sweet-smelling butterfly magnet.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2008 at 11:00PM
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Thanks so much, Dibbit and ralphw!

    Bookmark   October 27, 2008 at 6:48PM
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Clerodendrom is a wonderful small tree for a children's garden. Not only are the colors great and the blossoms very fragrant, but the leaves, when crushed, smell like peanut butter.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2008 at 5:44PM
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I saw a beautiful Clerodendron trichotomum planted in SC bot garden and ordered a small bareroot 3 years ago. I forgot about it and this summer, I noticed a "grove" of 12 little (2-3ft) trees suckered off a central small tree. I couldn't remember what I planted there, or if it was an invasive weed-tree. The smell of peanut butter off the leaves was what helped jog my aging memory. Sooooo, it's suckering and invasive, but lovely, and I will have babies for the spring Raleigh swap.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2008 at 1:03PM
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jeffahayes(8a Upstate SC)

Yeah, there was a BIG, BEAUTIFUL one growing at Hatcher Garden (from back in the day before there was a professional horticulturist running the place), and a couple years back he cut it down and replaced it with something less invasive, even though everyone loved it, just because of it's nasty reputation.

Really pretty plant with nice-smelling leaves, but just another one of those that is probably best left to its native regions, or at least very carefully maintained so the whole neighborhood doesn't end up with them.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2008 at 10:17PM
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