Christmas Blossom and Christmas Berry

Christmas Blossom

Christmas Blossom – Vernonia arborescens, synonym Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE, is a shrub with lilac blossoms that attract insects such as bees and the Faithful Beauty day-flying moth.

It is native to the Cayman Islands and Jamaica only.

Red List status: Vulnerable.

FLORA of the CAYMAN ISLANDS by George R. Proctor, published by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 2012, p.639.

The Plant List –  Vernonia arborescens

Christmas Blossom - Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. a bee visits the flowers. Photo: Ann Stafford, Nov. 27, 2010.

Christmas Blossom – Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. a bee visits the flowers. Photo: Ann Stafford, Nov. 27, 2010.

Christmas Blossom - Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. Photo: Ann Stafford, Dec15, 2008

Christmas Blossom – Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. Photo: Ann Stafford, Dec15, 2008

Christmas Blossom - Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. Photo: Ann Stafford, Dec.7, 2007.

Christmas Blossom – Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Dec.7, 2007.

Christmas Blossom - Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Nov. 27, 2011.

Christmas Blossom – Vernonia divaricata, synonym Lepidaploa divaricata, Family: ASTERACEAE. Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Nov. 27, 2011.

Christmas Berry

Christmas Berry – Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic. A shrub with distinctive shiny leaves with 3 leaflets. The tiny flowers, born in October, will become bright red berries by Christmas time. It grows in rocky thickets and woodlands on all three Cayman Islands.

Red List status: Near Threatened.

FLORA of the CAYMAN ISLANDS by George R. Proctor, published by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 2012, p.479.

Christmas Berry flowers - Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic. Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Oct. 8, 2012.

Christmas Berry flowers – Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic. Tiny flowers become bright red fruits around Christmastime Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Oct. 8, 2012.

Christmas Berry - Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic.Compound leaf with 3 leaflets. Virtual herbarium image Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Nov.30, 2002.

Christmas Berry – Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic.Compound leaf with 3 leaflets. Virtual herbarium image Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Nov.30, 2002.

Christmas Berry - Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic. Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Dec.26, 2001.

Christmas Berry – Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic. Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Dec.26, 2001.

Christmas Berry - Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic.Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Jan. 12, 2007.

Christmas Berry – Allophylus cominia var. caymanesis, Family: SAPINDACEAE, Cayman Islands endemic.Photo: Ann Stafford, Grand Cayman, Jan. 12, 2007.

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