Native Cherry, Ballart (Exocarpos cupressiformis)

A Native Cherry seed is on the outside of the fruit.
A Native Cherry seed is on the outside of the fruit.

Common names: Native Cherry, Ballart, Cherry Ballart, Cypress Cherry

Taxonomic name: Exocarpos cupressiformis

Family: Santalaceae

Habitat: Woodlands

Form: Graceful tree 3 – 8 metres

Flowering Time: Spring to Winter

Ngarrindjeri name: Ballot or Pallat

Description and uses:

Like its beach loving relative, Coastal Ballart , Native Cherry or ‘Ballart’ has a yellow flower followed by edible fruit that grows with its seed on the outside. The part we eat is actually an enlarged section of the flower stalk which is sweet and tasty, getting more so as it gets redder. Don’t eat the seed though, it’s bitter, just spit it onto the ground near another tree where you think it will grow nicely!

Native Cherry
Native Cherry

Native Cherry is a graceful tree with fine, divided branches and branchlets. Like the related Quandong and the more distantly related Mistletoes, it is hemiparasite in its early stages of growth, attaching itself to the roots of older trees (particularly Eucalypts) to gain nutrients.

The wood is particularly beautiful and is popular for woodwork.

Fine Native Cherry branchlets
Fine Native Cherry branchlets

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