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Ziziphus jujuba

Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Zizyphus zizyphus
Phonetic Spelling
ZIZ-ih-fuss JOO-joo-buh
Description

Common jujube is a deciduous tree or large shrub that is native from southeastern Europe to China growing 15 to 30 feet tall with a rounded or vase form. The branches typically have thorns and can be drooping in appearance. The fruit is edible and has been used in China for many years but is just becoming known in this country. The fruits mature from green with an apple-like texture and taste to a brownish-purple wrinkled fruit that is date-like. It can be eaten raw, dried or cooked. Fruit set may not occur in its northernmost zone due to a too-short growing season.

This tree prefers warm and somewhat dry climates and is very tolerant of alkaline soils. It will grow in full sun to partial shade and prefers well-drained but moist soils. It will tolerate poor soils and drought. Use in an edible garden, Asian garden or naturalized setting.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#thorns#deciduous#small tree#shade tree#shrub#small mammals#asian#edible fruits#naturalized area#poor soils tolerant#messy fruits#nectar plant late spring#songbirds#butterflies#drought intolerant
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#thorns#deciduous#small tree#shade tree#shrub#small mammals#asian#edible fruits#naturalized area#poor soils tolerant#messy fruits#nectar plant late spring#songbirds#butterflies#drought intolerant
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Ziziphus
    Species:
    jujuba
    Family:
    Rhamnaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Used in Chinese and herbal medicine for its effects on the nervous system
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Grafting
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    N. & E. China to S. Korea
    Distribution:
    United States, Mexico, Central America, South America, Asia, Africa.
    Fire Risk Rating:
    low flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts bees, butterflies, birds and small mammals.
    Play Value:
    Screening
    Shade
    Wildlife Cover/Habitat
    Edibility:
    Fruits can be eaten fresh, dried or cooked
    Dimensions:
    Height: 15 ft. 0 in. - 30 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 10 ft. 0 in. - 30 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Multi-trunked
    Rounded
    Spreading
    Vase
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
    Appendage:
    Thorns
  • 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:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    24-60 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Red/Burgundy
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Drupe
    Fruit Length:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Width:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    2/3- 1&1/4 inch oval to round drupe. When immature and green it has the flavor of an apple. Matures to brownish-purple and becomes wrinkled like a date. Contains a pit with 2 seeds.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Insignificant
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    3/16 inch inconspicuous white to yellowish-green fragrant flowers with 5 petals that bloom in the leaf axils. Bloom time is late spring to early summer.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Glossy
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Shine green leaves are .75-1.75 inches long and 0.4-1.2 inches wide. Ovate to lanceolate in shape with three conspicuous veins at the base. Tips are rounded. Fall color is sometimes yellow.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Dark Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Furrowed
    Scaly
    Bark Plate Shape:
    Square
    Bark Description:
    Dark brown to dark gray bark is blocky, furrowed or scaly
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Form:
    Zig Zags
    Stem Description:
    Brown stems with thorns
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Lawn
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Asian Garden
    Edible Garden
    Design Feature:
    Shade Tree
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Poor Soil
    Salt
    Problems:
    Messy