Common name: Miniature Holly, Singapore Holly, Dwarf Holly
Botanical name: Malpighia coccigera Family: Malpighiaceae (Barbados cherry family)
Malpighia cocigera is an interesting plant native to the West Indies. Small
dark green leaves with spiny edges make it look like a miniature Chinese holly.
The name, Malpighia, is used to honor Marcello Malpighia (1628 1693) He was a
distinguished naturalist at Bologna, Italy. It is a dwarf shrub with evergreen
opposite short petioled, spiny toothed leaves. Open, pink flowers and red
fruit. With growth habits available in weeping or prostrate forms depending
upon cultivar, Miniature Holly can serve a variety of landscape uses.
Their small size makes them well suited for planting along a foundation. The
fine texture contrasts nicely with medium and coarse-textured, taller shrubs.
Their dense growth habit allows them to fill in in front of taller shrubs
which may have become thin at the bottom. The glossy green foliage resembles
small holly leaves, and the plants are decorated throughout the year with
light pink, delicate, ruffled blossoms in spring and summer and small, bright
red cherries in fall and winter.
Identification credit: Nandan Kalbag
|Photographed in Garden of Five Senses, Delhi.|