gaultheria procumbens


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Related to gaultheria procumbens: Arctostaphylos uva-ursi
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wintergreen

wintergreen

Shiny, waxy oval pointed leaves, white hanging bell-shaped flowers, red berries. Leaves sometimes a bit brown or red. Gives the body strength. Doesn't die in winter, stays green year round (hence the name). Eat the leaves, make tea from them. Kind of a dull mint flavor. Tea used for colds, fever, headache, kidney, stomach, rheumatism, anti-inflammatory painkiller. Berries also edible. Do not make or take wintergreen essential oil, which is very toxic. It absorbs through skin and harms kidneys and liver.
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For instance, Gaultheria procumbens occurs on 96% of the plots sampled in unplowed areas, but on only 5% of formerly plowed plots.
The prevailing flowers and conspicuous small plants of the woods, which I noticed, were: Clintonia borealis, Linnoea, checkerberry (Gaultheria procumbens), Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla), great round-leaved orchis, Dalibarda repens, Chiogenes hispidula (creeping snowberry), Oxalis acetosella (common wood-sorrel), Aster acuminatus, Pyrola secunda (one-sided pyrola), Medeola Virginica (Indian cucumber-root), small Circa (enchanter's nightshade), and perhaps Cornus Canadensis (dwarf-cornel).
GAULTHERIA PROCUMBENS Also known as wintergreen, these creeping shrubs are fantastic for winter containers, combining well with skimmias, winter heathers and ivy.
They include: Euonymus "Emerald 'n' Gold" and Euonymus "Gray Beauty"; Pieris japonica "Little Heath" with its silvered edged leaves; Hebe topiaria, which is compact with tiny grey/green leaves; Gaultheria procumbens, which has attractive leaves with tiny white bell-like flowers and red berries; and Skimmia japonica, with shiny leaves, red buds and, later, white flowers.
The brilliant autumnal fruits of Gaultheria procumbens (formerly known as Pernettya) almost glow against its dark, shiny foliage and look superb in a hanging basket.