Elaeagnus umbellata - Japanese Silverberry or Autumn Olive


  • This plant is ornamental with its oval-shaped, dark green on top and silvery underneath leaves that have a wavy edge to them. During the Spring, it offers clusters of pale yellow-white flowers that are of a sweet scent, followed by unusual orange-red fruits (small bean sized) that are covered in tiny silver dots. The berries have a sweet flavour, they can be eaten ripe or they can be cooked and used in jams.

Other common names:  Autumn Olive
Native to:     China, Japan
Family: Oleaceae
Habit (UK conditions):  medium sized shrub or small  tree
Growth rate: medium
Typical size in 5 years (in a pot):   2m x 1m
Main value:    flowers, fruits
Flower colour:  creamy, fragrant
Flowering period: May
Autumn coloration:   shades of yellow
Preferences:    grows best in full sun, on many types of soil, suitable for the patio
Hardiness:    very hardy (to about -20C)
Edibility qualities:  fruits (raw when fully ripe or processed -jam, etc)


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