Brush Cherry - Syzygium australe - Care Guide
Syzygium australe! often referred to as Brush Cherry, this rainforest tree is native to eastern Australia. A common plant, you'll find it growing in coastal regions in Queensland and New South Wales. It grows beautiful bright pink, elongated fruits that contain a small circular seed.
With its flavour varying depending on ripeness, Brush Cherry generally has a refreshing taste with a slight hint of sourness to them and its crispness resembling that of apples. You can enjoy them raw on their own, but Brush Cherry makes for an incredible ingredient in all kinds of sweet and savoury recipes such as jams, juices, tarts, cakes, sorbet and so much more!
You can expect this spectacular native to blossom with creamy white powder puff flowers in late Spring that turn to edible fruits in early Summer.
Once the fruits have turned a bright red/pink colour or are falling from the tree, that's when they're ready for harvest. Waiting until this stage will guarantee the most delicious taste!
|Botanical Name||Syzygium australe|
|Size Plant:||Seedling pot, min 20 cm tall|
Tolerant once established.
|Drought Tolerance:||Tolerant once established.|
rich, well-drained soils.
|Pots:||Does well in pots.|
|Feeding:||Feed a high-quality native plant food every 6 months.|
For best results, plant your Brush Cherry in rich, well-drained soils (it can also survive in poorer soils) and place your plant in full sun. You can also grow in part shade for reasonable results. This dense, glossy shrub can attain a height of up to 35m. In a garden and with pruning, you're more likely to get a height of 18m tall. It's the perfect fruit tree for hedging or screening.
Only able to handle light frost initially, Brush Cherry we'll become frost tolerant once established. If you live in a cooler climate like Melbourne keeping your plant well protected is super important, so we recommend offering it extra protection during winter.
This lovely species does well in full sun but it can thrive in part sun but with lower fruiting amounts.
Watering & Drought Tolerance
Being a rainforest species, drying out is a common cause of death, especially for younger plants. Most Lilly Pilly varieties prefer reliable moisture over the warmer months. During wintertime, you can hold back on watering but as the temperature increases ensure that you're keeping your Brush Cherry well watered. When dry, it will wilt which is a good indication of when to water.
Although drought-tolerant once established, it will need additional watering in the summer.
Fertilising your Brush Cherry
Being a plant that generates large volumes of fruit, it's important to ensure continued fruiting that you feed regularly. We recommend feeding your plant every Spring with a dose of cow manure or organic fertiliser if you don’t have great soil. Fertilising with high-quality, plant food during winter and summer will result in a plant with deep green foliage and lots of fruit.
Harvesting should be done when the fruits have turned a bright red/pink colour or are falling from the tree. Waiting until this stage will guarantee the most delicious taste!
Growing Brush Cherry in pots
As a relatively fast-growing native edible plant, Brush Cherry can grow quickly if left unchecked.
Some issues can include drying out or overwatering, which can be easily identified by yellowing leaves or wilted leaves. Keep in a sunny spot on a balcony or backyard.
Use a high-quality potting mix without fillers or additives and add your own plant food for the highest success.