Schinus molle – Pepper Tree – Anacariaceae (Central and South America)
Habit: Gracious, picturesque, gnarled tree, 10-25 m tall, 3-5 m wide, with thin, slender, overhanging twigs.
Flowers: Yellowish white, inconspicuous flowers, panicles hanging from the many twigs, up to 15 cm long, winter to summer.
Fruit: Coral-red, pepper-size stoned berries in dense clusters, with bitter seeds, persistent through winter, peppery taste.
Leaves: Evergreen, pendent, pinnate, up to 10-30 cm long, single leaves evergreen, slender, serrated, medium to dark green, up to 5 cm long, containing ethereal oils, scent of pepper.
Demands: Full sun to shade, sensitive to frost, temperate house, very resistant to drought, very tolerant of pruning, wind resistant.
Natural habitat: Loamy-humic, moderately nutritious, well drained soil.
Hardiness: Zone 9