Osmanthus americanus

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"Devilwood" redirects here. For the short 2006 British film, see Devilwood (short film).
American olive
Osmanthus americanus leaves.jpg
Leaves of O. americanus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Oleaceae
Genus: Osmanthus
Species: O. americanus
Binomial name
Osmanthus americanus
(L.) Benth. & Hook.f. ex A.Gray

Osmanthus americanus, commonly called American olive,[3] wild olive,[3] or devilwood,[3] is an evergreen shrub or small tree[3] native to southeastern North America, in the United States from Virginia to Texas, and in Mexico from Nuevo León south to Oaxaca and Veracruz.[4][5]

Osmanthus americanus grows to 4–7 m (13–23 ft), rarely to 11 m (36 ft) tall. The leaves are 5–14 cm (2.0–5.5 in) long and 2–4 cm (0.79–1.57 in) broad, with an entire margin. Its flowers, produced in early spring, are small (1 cm long), white, with a four-lobed corolla and have a strong fragrance. The fruit is a globose dark blue drupe 6–15 mm (0.24–0.59 in) diameter, containing a single seed.[6][7][8]

It is cultivated as an ornamental plant in gardens for its fragrant flowers.

Natural range


  1. ^ "The Plant List". 
  2. ^ "The International Plant Names Index". 
  3. ^ a b c d Bailey, L.H.; Bailey, E.Z.; the staff of the Liberty Hyde Bailey Hortorium (1976). Hortus third: A concise dictionary of plants cultivated in the United States and Canada. New York: Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-02-505470-7. 
  4. ^ Germplasm Resources Information Network: Osmanthus americanus
  5. ^ Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families, Osmanthus americanus
  6. ^ Weaver, R. E. (2003). Botany Section. Tri-ology 42 (6): 1-16 pdf file
  7. ^ Centenary College Virtual Arboretum, Louisiana: Osmanthus americanus
  8. ^ Huxley, A., ed. (1992). New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. Macmillan ISBN 0-333-47494-5.