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Schinus molle
Schinus molle

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Zones vary by species.
Full Sun
Regular WaterMinimal Water
Moderate, Minimal
Foliage can cause dermatitis;


Pepper Tree
Evergreen, Trees, Decorative fruit or berries

Pepper trees are praised by some gardeners, heartily disliked by others. The two species discussed here differ markedly, though both are tolerant of many soils, and leaves of both can cause dermatitis. Female trees bear abundant, small red fruits that attract birds.

Schinus molle
Schinus molle

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Schinus molle

From the Peruvian Andes. Fast growth 25 to 40 ft. tall and wide. Trunks of old trees are heavy and fantastically gnarled, with knots and burls that often sprout leaves or small branches. Heavy limbs; light, gracefully drooping branchlets. Bright green leaves with many narrow leaflets to 2 in. long. Drooping, 4 to 6-in. clusters of tiny yellowish-white summer flowers; rosy berries in fall, winter. (Some trees have nearly all male flowers; these do not bear fruit.)

Schinus terebinthifolius

From Brazil. Moderate growth to 30 ft. tall and wide; train to single or multiple trunks. Nonpendulous growth. Has darker green, coarser, more glossy leaves than Schinus molle, with 5 to 13 oval leaflets; showy bright red berries in winter.

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