Arbutus (Arbutus Unedo) Or Strawberry Tree

Arbutus (Arbutus unedo)

Thearbutus or "strawberry tree" is a fruit tree with evergreen foliage that gives nice fruits called arbouses or Chinese strawberries. This shrub of Mediterranean origin is rustic even if it is mainly cultivated in Corsica, in Provence, and on the Atlantic coast of South-West. It fears strong frosts but can withstand up to -10° C.

The strawberry tree blooms in the fall with honeycomb-like blossom-shaped bells and gives fruit in the autumn after, so that it bears flowers and fruit at the same time: curious not? ! The leaves are elliptical and shiny, slightly toothed. The bark of the trunk becomes reddish over time.

The yellow flesh of the fruit is fleshy, tangy and sweet with many small seeds. The skin is thick, rough and covered with small pimples. The arbutus are edible, they are very rich in vitamins C and polyphenols. Their antioxidant properties are particularly interesting. These berries are very caloric and rich in fiber.

  • Family: Ericacées
  • Type: perennial
  • Origin: Mediterranean Basin
  • Color: White flowers
  • cutting: yes, in summer
  • Planting: spring or autumn
  • Harvest: autumn
  • Height: up to 5 m

Soil and ideal exposure to plant an arbutus in the garden

The strawberry tree likes the sun, a rich and well drained land, neutral in acidity and a normal humidity.

Date of planting and cuttings of arbutus

Propagation can be done by cuttings in summer. Planting will be done in the spring or fall.

Board of maintenance and culture of arbutus

Cut the branches only to give it a graceful port. Slow growth. Slash in winter and protect with a wintering veil in cold regions.

Harvesting, conservation and use of arbutus fruits

The arbutus is harvested when it is red and a little softened. They are used in jam, jelly, compote but also vinegar, liquor or aperitif wine. The leaves are used in decoction for their diuretic and antiseptic properties.

Diseases, pests and parasites of strawberry tree

There are no known diseases for the strawberry tree.

Location and favorable association of strawberry tree

Isolated, near a wall, or ferry.

We distinguish a few varieties, Arbutus unedo 'compacta', with a dense, pyramidal habit producing fairly large orange fruits, Arbutus unedo 'quercifolia', with slightly lobed leaves, and Arbutus unedo 'rubrawith pink flowers, Arbutus unedo 'Atlantic', Arbutus unedo 'Pink Pearl'….

Video: Strawberry Tree Fruit Review (Arbutus Unedo) - Weird Fruit Explorer - Ep. 71.

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