This bush food plant is native to arid regions of Australia, and grows to a small shrub with pale yellow-green leaves. The bush produces purple flowers from late summer to spring, followed by the edible small fruits, which are yellow when ripe and dry to brown on the bush, resembling raisins. The fruits are rich in Vitamin C and have a flavour described as similar to tamarillo and caramel. Green or unripe fruits are toxic.
The plant fruits well in the year after fire or abundant rains. The plant can also regrow from dormant root stock after periods of drought. Main plant produces underground suckers. Seed will benefit greatly from smoke treatment for germination. The plant needs very little water.
Picture provided by Philip Clarke, from his new book Discovering Aboriginal Plant Use: Journeys of an Australian Anthropologist
|Scientific Name:||Solanum centrale|
|Other Common Names:||Desert Raisin|
|Plant Type:||Small shrub|
|Height:||0.1 ~ 0.5 metres|
|Width:||0.1 ~ 0.3 metres|
|Flowering Time:||Spring, Summer, Autumn|
|Ph Level:||Acid, Neutral|
|Soil Type:||Sandy, Sandy loam, Poor soil|
|Plant Environment:||Low maintenance garden, Drought resistant|
|Climate Zone:||Warm temperate, Mediterranean, Semi-arid, Arid|
|Light:||Sunny, Light shade|
|Growth Habit:||Evergreen, Open foliage|
|Soil Moisture:||Dry, Well-drained|
|Frost Tolerance:||Tolerates light frost|
|Special Uses:||Edible, Fast growing|
|Attracts Wildlife:||Bees, Butterflies, Other insects|
The information provided on the Gardening With Angus website is provided for general educational purposes about a variety of Australian plants. We recommend you seek further advice from qualified professionals regarding your own individual circumstances. Further disclaimer information>>
WHERE TO GET YOUR PLANT
Once you have found the plant that looks right for you, the next step is where to buy it.
Most nurseries stock a good range of plants, but due to space and supplies, they may not always have the plant that you are searching for in stock. If they don’t, they may be able to order it in for you if you request it.
Specialist nurseries are also able to give great advice, and if they don’t have the plant you have planned on, they can often suggest alternatives that will also work well for you.
Below is a list of our favourite specialist nurseries. Click on the links for their details-
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