Brazilian Pepper Tree (Schinus terebinthifolia)

Common names:
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General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 8b -9.4 °C (15 °F) to -6.7 °C (20 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 11
Plant Height: 25 - 30 feet
Plant Spread: 25 feet
Leaves: Evergreen
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Flower Color: White
Flower Time: Late spring or early summer
Late summer or early fall
Wildlife Attractant: Bees


Posted by plantladylin (Sebastian, Florida - Zone 10a) on Oct 6, 2011 12:18 PM

Brazilian Pepper is native to Argentina but has become naturalized in many tropical and subtropical areas of the world. It is an extremely invasive plant, choking out native plants and trees. Brazilian Pepper is a beautiful evergreen attaining heights and spread to 30 feet with arching, crossing branches that form dense thickets. The leaves have a peppery/turpentine scent when crushed. Tiny white flowers appear summer through fall, followed by bright red drupes/berries that last all winter. Birds and other animals are fond of the fruit and disperse the seeds, which leads to the spread of this plant.

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Posted by Mindy03 (Delta KY) on May 11, 2012 6:03 PM

Honey bees get nectar from this plant.

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Posted by dyzzypyxxy (Sarasota, Fl) on Aug 28, 2014 12:23 PM

A Class 1 invasive pest in Florida and Hawaii, and prohibited from sale or distribution in Texas, this is also a banned tree in Australia and South Africa. It forms dense stands and out-competes native species.

If you are either pruning or removing Brazilian Pepper on your property, be cautious and wear protective clothing as the sap is a severe irritant to some people. Do not burn the wood or branches, as the smoke is also noxious.

The pretty clusters of Brazilian Pepper fruit are sometimes used on holiday wreaths and other decorations. If you find yourself in possession of such a thing, dispose of the pepper seeds in the trash, enclosed in a plastic bag, and do not burn or compost them. Do not leave the decoration outdoors where birds or wildlife could eat and disperse the seeds.

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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Brazilian Pepper Tree by montgoka Oct 11, 2020 2:05 PM 1
Unknown shrub by Darrieb Aug 27, 2020 2:15 PM 4
Tree/shrub ID. by vivianf726 Oct 15, 2019 1:57 PM 12
FLorida plant ID by ardesia Dec 9, 2018 4:02 PM 15
Salt tolerant plants by eclayne Oct 10, 2020 8:42 PM 133

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