Eugenia uniflora L.

Last updated: 19 Aug 2015

Scientific Name

Eugenia uniflora L.


Eugenia arechavaletae Herter, Eugenia costata Cambess., Eugenia dasyblasta (O.Berg) Nied., Eugenia decidua Merr., Eugenia indica Nicheli, Eugenia lacustris Barb. Rodr., Eugenia michelii Lam., Eugenia microphylla Barb. Rodr., Eugenia myrtifolia Salisb., Eugenia oblongifolia (O.Berg) Arechav., Eugenia oblongifolia (O.Berg) Nied. [Illegitimate], Eugenia strigosa (O.Berg) Arechav., Eugenia willdenowii (Spreng.) DC. [Illegitimate], Eugenia zeylanica Willd., Luma arechavaletae (Herter) Herter, Luma costata (Cambess.) Herter, Luma dasyblasta (O.Berg) Herter, Luma strigosa (O.Berg) Herter, Myrtus brasiliana L., Myrtus willdenowii Spreng., Plinia pedunculata L.f., Plinia petiolata L. [Illegitimate], Plinia rubra L., Plinia tetrapetala L., Stenocalyx affinis O.Berg, Stenocalyx brunneus O.Berg, Stenocalyx costatus (Cambess.) O.Berg, Stenocalyx dasyblastus O.Berg, Stenocalyx glaber O.Berg, Stenocalyx impunctatus O.Berg, Stenocalyx lucidus O.Berg, Stenocalyx michelii (Lam.) O.Berg, Stenocalyx nhampiri Barb. Rodr., Stenocalyx oblongifolius O.Berg, Stenocalyx rhampiri Barb.Rodr., Stenocalyx ruber (L.) Kausel, Stenocalyx strigosus O.Berg, Stenocalyx uniflorus (L.) Kausel, Syzygium michelii (Lam.) Duthie [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Ceremai Belanda [2], chermai Belanda [3]
English Brazil cherry, Surinam cherry, pitanga [2], barka tree, Brazillian cherry, Cayenne cherry [3]
Indonesia Ceremai belanda, dewandaru [2]
Thailand Mayom-farang (Bangkok) [2]
Sri Lanka Goraka jambu [3]
Japan Pitanka, tachi-bana-adeku [3]
Yoruba Pitanga [3]
Congo Ipesa, mapesa [3]
France Cerise de Cayenne, cerises-cotes, cerise carree [2]
South America Arrayan, caaginja, ioioca, murta, pitanga do mato, pitanga vermelha, pitangueira, puca quiro, umurirana [3].

Geographical Distributions

Eugenia uniflora is native to South America, from Surinam, Guyana and French Guyana to southern Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. At present, it is grown all over the tropics and subtropics. In Southeast Asia, it is rare (Java, Peninsular Malaysia, the Philippines). [2]

Botanical Description

E. uniflora is a member of the family Myrtaceae. It is an evergreen shrub or tree, up to 7 m tall, with spreading, slender but sometimes crooked branches. [2]

The leaves are arranged opposite, ovate to lance-shaped, measuring 2.5-6 cm x 1.5-3 cm, rounded or slightly cordate at the base, with obtuse to shortly acuminate apex, hairless, glossy, pellucidly dotted, bronze when young but dark green when mature and turning red in cold and dry weather. [2]

The flowers are fragrant, 1-4 together in the leaf axils, creamy white and about 1 cm in diametre. The sepal is tubular, 8-ribbed and 4-lobed. The petals are white and 7-11 mm long. There are 50-60 stamens. [2]

The fruit is a pendulous berry, spherical depressed in outline, 1-4 cm in diametre, 7- to 8-ribbed, greenish when young but turns to orange during development and bright red to blackish when mature. The skin is thin, flesh orange-red, juicy, acid to sweet and slightly resinous. There are 1 large seed or 2-3 smaller ones and flattened. [2]


E. uniflora is rather cold-tolerant and will stand several degrees of frost unharmed. It thrives best in full sun and requires only moderate rainfall. It withstands a long dry season. In the Philippines, it grows up to 1000 m altitude, while in Guatemala up to 1800 m. It grows in almost any type of soil and withstands temporary water logging, but it is intolerant of salt. Seedlings grow slowly. Flowering and fruiting may start at 2 years old under favourable circumstances, otherwise it usually starts at 5-6 years old, on the flushes of the previous season or basal part of the shoots of the current season. The fruits develop and ripen quickly, only 3 weeks after anthesis. Flowering and fruiting continue over an extended period (6-8 weeks) and, depending on the climate, there may be several harvests in a year. [2]

Chemical Constituent

No documentation.

Plant Part Used

No documentation.

Traditional Use

No documentation.

Preclinical Data

No documentation.

Clinical Data

No documentation.


No documentation.

Poisonous Management

No documentation.

Line drawing


Figure 1: The line drawing of E. uniflora [2]


  1. The Plant List.  Ver1.1. Eugenia uniflora L. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Apr 18; cited 2015 Aug 19]. Available from:
  2. Syzygium uniflora. In: Verheij EWM, Coronel RE, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 2: Edible fruits and nuts. Wageningen, Netherlands: Pudoc; 1991.
  3. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume III E-L. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press; 2012. p. 152-153.