The Red Bayberry is a small to medium sub tropical tree originally from China and is known as the ‘Chinese Tree berry’ or ‘Yangmei’. The sweet tasting fruit of Myrica rubra or ‘ Red Bayberry’ is used in deserts and also is claimed to have medicinal uses.
Clusters of bright red fruit, requires humidity to ripen properly and when grown properly they are a valuable crop. The fruit is sweet and juicy with a pip or stone similar to a cherry stone in size.
One of the problems is that the fruit does not ‘travel’ well once picked, this has limited commercial growing of the fruit in Australia. It is also the cultivars that have been developed in China for many years that provide the best fruit, so growing from seed can be problematical.
In Japan the Red Bayberry is known as ‘Yamamomo’, ‘Mountain Peach’ or ‘Chinese Strawberry’ and is used to make herbal tea.
The tree itself is fast growing when grown in good soil with moisture and warmth, and works well as an ornamental tree as well as fruiting tree.
Although regarded as a tropical to sub tropical fruit tree, trial plantations can be found in the Atherton Tablelands to as far south as Melbourne.
Myrica rubra ‘Red Bayberry’ Growing Conditions.
The tree has both male and female forms, both are required for pollination.
- Botanical Nane – Myrica rubra
- Common Names – Red Bayberry, Chinese Strawberry, Yumberry, Japanese Bayberry.
- Climate – Best in subtropical climates for the fruit to ripen correctly.
- Soil – Well drained
- Position – Full sun
- Foliage – Evergreen foliage, mid green.
- Root system – Shallow.
- Fruiting period – Mid summer
- Height – This is a tree that can reach 15 in height, usually pruned to less than this.
- Spread – Forms crown to around 6 – 7 metres over time.
Myrica ceriferaor ‘Bayberry’ is originally from Southern USA where it is also known as Bay-rum tree, Candleberry and Sweet Gale. It is a deciduous to semi-evergreen plant depending on climate. Myrica ceriferaor is used to make the well known ‘Bayberry candles’
Red Bayberry may be propagated from seeds or cuttings. However you will need both male and female forms to have a fruiting tree.