Botanical Name: Rivina humilis
Common Name: Rouge Plant, Pigeonberry Plant, Bloodberry, Small Pokeweed
Description: Looking for an evergreen, small shrub that flowers, produces bright red berries, and likes a part sun, part shade, or shade situation?? Then the gorgeous little Rouge Plant is for you.
This Florida native, long-lived perennial grows naturally in the dappled shade under trees, in low-light areas where grass often refuses to grow. During frost-free months it produces delicate white to pink flowers visited by pollinators, and clusters of bright red berries relished by birds. It grows quickly to 3-4′ tall x 1-3′ wide. After a few years if it gets too leggy, simply cut it back in late winter. In a couple of months, it will return to its old self, full-leaved and flowering once again. Is somewhat drought tolerant for short periods of time after becoming established, but it will go dormant in the summer if it doesn’t get enough water. Likes moist, well-drained sandy, limestone, or organic soils, with a humusy top layer. Is deer resistant. The berries and leaves are toxic to people and pets, so add it to your Poison Garden! Host plant for the Goodson’s Greystreak Butterfly.
Not salt tolerant of inundation by salty or brackish water. Some tolerance to salty wind but not direct salt spray.
This plant in 1-gallon containers is 8-15″ tall.
This plant in 3-gallon containers is 1.5-2.5′ tall.
Plant Lore: The berries have been used for cosmetics and dyes, hence the name rouge plant.
Florida Hardiness Zones 9 – 11 / East Gulf Coastal Plain Ecoregion