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Shiva's Tears Elaeocarpus grandiflorus

Previously known as:

  • Elaeocarpus lanceolata
  • Monocera lanceolata
Phonetic Spelling
El-lee-oh-kar-PUS gran-dih-FLOR-us
Description

Elaeocarpus grandiflorus, or Lily of the Valley Tree, is an evergreen small tree or shrub with leathery dark green leaves and attractive fringed white flowers. Left to its own devices, it can reach heights of 90 feet, but it is more typically kept small and grown in a container. It is often grown as an ornamental in the landscape. It is native to Indochina and is typically found in tropical or sub-tropical rain forests and is not cold hardy.

Lily of the Valley Tree produces clusters of frilly flowers with the blooms all along the stems from late winter through summer. It makes an excellent indoor plant for its ability to tolerate dry conditions and lower light levels. It is ideal for the tropical garden as it needs little maintenance, tolerates low nutrient and dry soils, but performs best when well watered. It is hardy to at least a light freeze when established (as low as mid-20's). Small plants require regular watering, then as the plant matures in the ground, it becomes drought tolerant.

The fruit of this tree, once cleaned of the flesh and polished, are used in India as stones in necklaces, bracelets and other ornaments, or in rosaries with religious significance.

Diseases, Insect Pests, and Other Plant Problems:

No known diseases or insect pest issues. Sensitive to overfeeding when grown indoors. The tree is normally evergreen, but may shed leaves for a short period of time during cold or drought periods.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#small tree#drought tolerant#flowering tree#edible fruits#indoor tree#ornamental tree#container plants
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#small tree#drought tolerant#flowering tree#edible fruits#indoor tree#ornamental tree#container plants
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Elaeocarpus
    Species:
    grandiflorus
    Family:
    Elaeocarpaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    The bitter bark has been used as a poultice for ulcers. Leaves and seeds are bitter and used as tonic.
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Indo-China to Malesia
    Distribution:
    Borneo, Cambodia, Laos, Malaya, Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts birds and is a food plant for butterflies.
    Edibility:
    Fruits are edible but sour.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Shrub
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Conical
    Dense
    Erect
    Oval
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9b, 9a, 10b, 10a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Drupe
    Fruit Width:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    Green-yellow 1 inch ovoid drupe with a fleshy coating. Inside is a 4-seeded stone marked with 5 vertical grooves.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Pink
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Winter
    Flower Shape:
    Bell
    Flower Petals:
    Colored Sepals
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Small, 1 to 1 1/2 inch, white fringed flowers appear in late spring. Flowers are pendulous clusters with pinkish-red sepals and frilly white petals. The flowers hang downwards, reminiscent of lily-of-the-valley. Each bloom is clasped in narrow, finely pointed sepals, with its petals deeply incised to give the appearance of a shaggy fringe. Flowers have an unusual liquorice scent.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Feel:
    Smooth
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Description:
    Young leaves are red, turning dark green. Old leaves turn bright red to scarlet before falling. Clusters of finely toothed, glossy leaves are hairy and paler beneath.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Light Brown
    Light Gray
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Lawn
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Flowering Tree
    Small Tree
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought