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Sea-Grape Tree

Coccoloba uvifera

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Zone 10

Sea-Grape (or Seagrape) is a Florida native and also of the Tropical Americas.  Rated at about 25 feet, this tree is related to the coral vine and pigeon-plum, Coccoloba diversifolia.   It can be a large shrub or a small tree, depending on nature or your training

Sea Grape has large, thick, round evergreen leaves.  Young leaves are red and then turn to a nice shiny green.   The Seagrape's wood is interesting and very nicely colored, varying with the amount of sun and salt exposure

The 'grapes' are the seeds and grow in nice clusters, especially where exposed to the sun.  Birds love to eat the grapes and a fine jelly can be made when ripe in early summer

Don't confuse Seagrape with Sea Hibiscus, Hibiscus tiliaceus, which also has very large leaves and flowers that change color as they mature.  There is also a variegated Sea Hibiscus, very nice

Seagrape is salt tolerant and can be happy very close to the ocean if not overly exposed to strong winds.  It wants full sun and its favorite soil is plain beach sand.  Better soil, however, is appreciated as long as it is well drained

When planting from a container, add some rich soil and water faithfully until established.  Thereafter, no care except pruning for desired appearance is required

Coccoloba grandiflora is the Big-Leaf Sea-Grape and rarely seen in the landscape

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Also native to Tropical America, it sports the largest leaves of any Florida landscape plant - easily a yard across in good conditions.  It prefers high shifting light and wind protection.  Big-Leaf Sea Grape is a real show stopper