Eugenia axillaris

Common name: white stopper
Family: Myrtaceae (Myrtle)
Distribution: Monroe County Keys north to Volusia and Levy counties; Bermuda, West Indies, Mexico and Central America
Description: Eugenia axillaris, white stopper, is native to hammocks of South Florida as well as the West Indies, Mexico and Central America. These small evergreen trees or small shrubs can grow to 25 feet, tolerate a variety of light levels and soil types, and make an excellent screen when planted in a row. White stoppers are known to sometimes emit a “skunky” smell, however leaves smell pleasantly spicy when crushed, and flowers produce a nice perfume. Dark purple/black fruits are a hit with migratory birds. The name "stopper" is derived from the plants medicinal use by early Florida settlers to cure diarrhea. Plant in light shade or full sun.


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