Tropical Sea Grape

The Sea Grape (Coccoloba uvifera), native to the sandy seashores of tropical America, usually forms a low shrub or small tree. The stiff, roundish leaves may measure 8 by 7 inches (20 by 17.5 cm) and have prominent veins. 
The attractive appearance of the leaves on the flexuous branches and the resistance of the plant to damage by salt make it valuable as an ornamental for ocean-side homes. 

Small white flowers are produced on slender, hanging racemes 4 to 10 inches long (10 to 25 cm). As many as 40 or 50 fruits may be found on a single cluster, giving the appearance of a bunch of grapes.

The velvety fruits are round to pear-shaped, about 3/4 of an inch long (2 cm), and range from dark purple, to purple, to occasionally off white. The edible pulp surrounds a globular seed with a short sharp point on the top. The pulp is sweetish-acid in flavor and is eaten out of hand or is used to make an excellent jelly.

The sea grape can be readily propagated by seeds and by cuttings of ripe wood. Excellent Houseplant and Bonsai material.

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