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Coriaria ruscifolia is a
All parts of the plant, except the 'fruit' (actually the petals) are highly poisonous[
Southern S. America.
Prefers a fairly good loamy soil in a sunny sheltered position[
, 200. Succeeds in light shade[
This species is not very hardy in Britain, it tolerates temperatures down to about -5°c and succeeds outdoors from Sussex and westwards[
There is some confusion over the name of this species, some botanists unite this species with the New Zealand C. sarmentosa whilst others maintain that they are distinct[
The roots of plants in this genus bear nitrogen-fixing nodules[
]. Whilst much of the nitrogen will be utilized by the growing plant, some of it will become available for other plants growing nearby[
Fruit - raw or used as a beverage[
]. The pressed fruit yields a very palatable juice, which is drunk raw or fermented into wine[
]. Use with great caution since most parts of the plant, including the seed[
], are very toxic and some reports suggest the fruit should not be used at all[
A black ink is obtained from the leaves, it can also be used as a dye[
]. The bark can also be used, it is rich in tannin.
Seed - sow February/March in a greenhouse[
]. The seed usually germinates in 1 - 3 months at 15°c[
]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 7cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Fair percentage[