General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Partial or Dappled Shade
Partial Shade to Full Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Slightly alkaline (7.4 – 7.8)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 8b -9.4 °C (15 °F) to -6.7 °C (20 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 11
Plant Height: 8 to 16 feet
Plant Spread: 8 to 16 feet
Leaves: Evergreen
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Other: 1/4 inch drupes mature to red and then dark purplish-black
Fruiting Time: Late summer or early fall
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Pink
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Summer
Other: Can bloom year round but peak bloom time is during the summer.
Suitable Locations: Patio/Ornamental/Small Tree
Uses: Provides winter interest
Will Naturalize
Wildlife Attractant: Birds
Resistances: Humidity tolerant
Containers: Suitable in 3 gallon or larger
Needs excellent drainage in pots

Common names
  • Shoebutton Ardisia
  • Inkberry
  • Seashore Aralia

Photo Gallery
Uploaded by Hamwild
Uploaded by slaguila
Uploaded by jmang55
Uploaded by jmang55
Uploaded by slaguila

Date: September 29, 2009

Date: 2007-05-29 
Juvenile form in a little 4\" pot.

Date: 2009-08-01

Date: 2009-12-29 
New leaves are reddish in color.
Location: Keanae Arboretum, Maui, Hawaii.
Date: August 7, 2003
photo by Forest & Kim Starr
Location: Keanae Arboretum, Maui, Hawaii.
Date: August 7, 2003
photo by Forest & Kim Starr
Location: Orem,  Utah Nursery
Date: 2011-11-05
Location: Orem, Utah Nursery
Date: 2011-11-05

Date: June 5, 2010
Shoebutton Ardisia

Date: September 29, 2009
Close up shot of the berries/fruit
  • Posted by plantladylin (Sebastian, Florida - Zone 10a) on Oct 8, 2011 8:16 AM concerning plant:
    Ardisia elliptica is native to Southeast Asia but the plant has become naturalized in moist tropical regions like Hawaii and the southern part of Florida. Shoebutton Ardisia is a tropical, evergreen shrub or small tree that can reach heights of 20 feet. The plant has alternate leathery leaves, with new leaves that are pink to reddish in color that turn dark green with age. Shoebutton Ardisia blooms year round but the peak blooming period is during the summer months. The small star shaped pink flowers hang in clusters from the leaf axils and are followed by round button shaped drupes/fruits. The berries/fruits are consumed by birds and other animals and their dispersement causes rapid spread of this plant. The common name of "Shoebutton" comes from the little button shaped fruit, while the common name "Ink Berry" is due to the berries having a juice that stains like ink.

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