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Common Name: Sand Coprosma
Coprosma acerosa is an evergreen shrub that can grow up to 0.50 metres tall.
It has edible and miscellaneous uses.
Coastal sand dunes[
] and elevations up to 1200 metres[
], on North, South and Chatham Islands[
Requires a moist, very well-drained neutral to slightly acid soil in full sun or light shade[
]. An easily grown plant, it succeeds in most soils, so long as they are well-drained[
]. Judging by its habitat this plant should be tolerant of maritime exposure[
Somewhat intolerant of frost[
], this species is hardy at Kew but it prefers milder winters[
]. It does not succeed in the colder areas of the country[
]. Fruits are freely produced in Ireland[
]. Does well on a sunny ledge in the rock garden[
A widely spreading mat-forming prostrate plant, though it will eventually build up to a height of 60cm[
Hybridizes freely with other members of this genus[
], especially C. petriei[
Plants are normally dioecious, though in some species the plants produce a few flowers of the opposite sex before the main flowering and a few hermaphrodite flowers are sometimes produced[
]. Male and female plants must usually be grown if seed is required.
Fruit - raw[
]. Sweet and juicy[
], but with little flavour[
]. The fruit is usually pale blue and up to 8mm long x 6mm wide[
The roasted seed is an excellent coffee substitute[
A yellow dye is obtained from the wood, it does not require a mordant[
Seed - probably best sown as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse or cold frame[
]. Sow stored seed in spring in a cold frame[
]. Germination can be slow, often taking more than 12 months even when fresh seed is used[
]. When the seedlings are large enough to handle, prick them out into individual pots. Grow on the plants for at least their first winter in a greenhouse and plant out in late spring or early summer. Give the plants some protection from the cold for their first winter outdoors[
Cuttings of mature wood of the current year's growth, autumn in a frame.