Brush Cherry

Also known as:
Purple Monkey Apple

General description

Erect, evergreen tree <15 tall. Glossy green leaves, oval, narrow & pointed. Abundant white, myrtle-like flowers (Jan-Jul). Masses of glossy, oval, rosy-purple berries hanging in bunches.

Grows rapidly in most conditions. Frost tender when young.

Spread by larger birds & possums.

Out-competes & displaces native species. Forms dense stands in open areas.

Site management

Maintain rolling front of control. Follow up at least 6-monthly to control seedlings. Replant densely (use pigeon-friendly spp.) where possible to minimise seedling growth.

Recommended approaches

1. Pull or dig out seedlings.
2. Cut stem or drill holes (1 cut or hole per 100mm stem diameter) fill each cut or hole with 2g metsulfuron (dissolved in approx 50ml water).
3. Cut & stump paint (5g metsulfuron/1L).
4. Spray spring - autumn ( 5g metsulfuron+10ml penetrant/10L).

Caution: when using any herbicide or pesticide PLEASE READ THE LABEL THOROUGHLY to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Similar species

monkey apple
Syzygium smithii

Monkey apple's fruit are white to pale pink in colour. Otherwise the plants are very similar. Monkey apple is a more common plant.

tree privet
Ligustrum lucidum

The new leaves of tree privet lack the reddish colour that brush cherry has. Tree privet berries are black.

Search tags

RPMS status

Surveillance - Hauraki Gulf Islands
brush cherry - Main species image