The Eugenia Shrub, Eugenia Uniflora, also known as Surinam Cherry, can serve as a quick and easy privacy hedge solution. Gaining up to 4 feet (1 m.) per year, in tropical regions it can grow in excess of 25 feet (8 m.) tall. In U.S. hardiness zones 10 and 11 the shrub averages 8 to 20 feet (2-6 m.) tall. Some of the many varieties of Eugenia are part of the genus syzygium paniculatum family. Most varieties produce an edible cherry.
Eugenia, a broadleaf evergreen shrub also sometimes called brush cherry, is native to South America and is grown in many other warm regions. With its bronzy leaves and small, fragrant, white flowers this plant’s long taproot helps make it drought resistant. Continue reading to learn about growing Eugenia shrubs as privacy hedges, as well as Eugenia hedge care.
Eugenia Shrubs for Privacy Hedge
Eugenia thrives in full sun and can tolerate a bit of shade. Eugenia shrubs grow well in varied soil conditions including alkaline, clayish, sandy, acidic, or loamy soil, which makes for a wide range of acceptable planting conditions. However, these shrubs do not like wet feet, so well-draining soil is important. They are also intolerant of salty environments.
Eugenia hedge spacing depends on the kind of hedge you want. For a dense hedge to block out strong winds, distracting noise, or nosy neighbors, plant the shrubs 3 to 5 feet (1-1.5 m.) apart.
For an open, informal Eugenia hedge, plant Eugenia shrubs further apart. Eugenia shrubs spaced even 10 feet (3 m.) apart can still provide some privacy and will have a more open, airy, and welcoming feel than a solid wall of Eugenia.
Eugenia Hedge Care
A Eugenia garden hedge is very fast growing. Left alone, Eugenias can grow up to 20 feet (6 m.) tall, but as hedges, they are usually kept trimmed to only 5 to 10 feet (1.5-3 m.) tall. Due to their dense growing habit and thin leaves, Eugenias can easily be trimmed into beautiful formal hedges.
Again, without allowing its roots to sit in water, these plants can handle some watering every day, especially in warmer weather. If its leaves begin to curl up, water your Eugenia hedge deeply, as this is the shrub’s way of telling you that it’s thirsty. The shrubs enjoy being mulched on a regular basis as they grow and appreciate a balanced fertilizer in springtime. After being established for a year or two, they will likely produce a crop of Surinam cherries.
Eugenia Hedge Fruit
Eugenia’s fruit, the Surinam Cherry, although not appealing to everyone, is edible. It’s popular in some regions for use in jams and cooking for its high Vitamin C content. As a hedge, the fruit the Eugenia produces is appreciated by birds and wildlife.