Malpighiaceae – Bunchosia


 Barbados cherry family

Malpighia family

Malpighiaceae includess approximately 66 genera of woody climbers, trees, and shrubs from the tropics, with greatest diversity in tropical America. Leaves are simple, opppsite, usually with paired glands on the petioles or near the base of the blade. They characteristically have T – shaped, occasionally irritating hairs. Flowers are usually bisexual, bilaterally to almost radially symmetrical, and in racemes. The 5 petals are often fringed and usually clawed. The sepals often have oil glands. There is one inconspicuous bract and 2 bracteoles. The fruit is a fleshy drupe, schizocarp, nut, or samara. The fuiccy fruits of Malpighia emarginata have high concentrations of Vitamin C.


Bunchosia includes approximately 60 speciess of shrubs and small trees from tropical America. These are plants of the forest understory. The leaves are simple, leathery, and often hairy, with 2 large glands at the base of the leaf blade on opposite sides of the midvein. Flowers are always yellow with 8- 10 glands on the calyx. The 10 fertile stamens have fused bases. The one – seeded fruit of B. armeniaca is very  tasty  and a noutishing source of food for wildlife.

Bunchosia armeniaca

Peanut – butter  plant,

Cerezo, ciruela silvestre

Synonym: Malpighia armeniaca. Northern and western South America. Evergreen shrub or tree, 10-30 ft, zones 9-11. Blooms late spring, summer. Moderate moisture. Average, well drained soil. Full to part sun. Flowers: small, yellow, clawed, in dense clusters, fruit plum – sized, orange. leaves: ovate, 4-6 in. Fruit has a sticky, sweet – textured pulp, a tasty fat -free combination of peanut butter with a touch of honey.

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