Frangula caroliniana

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Frangula caroliniana
Rhamnus caroliniana.jpg
Scientific classification
F. caroliniana
Binomial name
Frangula caroliniana
Rhamnus caroliniana map.png
Generalized natural range of Frangula caroliniana
  • Rhamnus caroliniana Walter

Frangula caroliniana, commonly called the Carolina buckthorn,[2] is an upright shrub or small tree native to the southeastern, south-central, and mid-western parts of the United States, from Texas east to Florida and north as far as Maryland, Ohio, Missouri, and Oklahoma.[3] There is also an isolated population in the State of Nuevo León in northeastern Mexico.[4] It is found in a wide variety of habitats, including barrens, forests, and limestone bluffs.[5]


Rhamnus caroliniana is usually around 12 to 15 feet (3.6-4.5 meters) high, but capable of reaching 40 feet (12 meters) in a shaded location.[6] The most striking characteristic of this plant are its shiny, dark green leaves. The flowers are very small and inconspicuous, pale yellow-green, bell-shaped, appearing in leaf axils in late spring after the leaves. The fruit is a small (1/3 inch or 8.3 mm) round drupe; at first red, but later turning black with juicy flesh. It ripens in late summer.[7]

Despite its common name, the Carolina buckthorn is completely thornless.


  1. ^ Tropicos, Rhamnus caroliniana Walter
  2. ^ "Frangula caroliniana". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  3. ^ Biota of North America Program 2014 county distribution map
  4. ^ "Rhamnus caroliniana Range Map" (PDF). United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2009-07-07.
  5. ^ Flora of North America Frangula caroliniana
  6. ^ "Rhamnus caroliniana Carolina Buckthorn" (PDF). University of Florida. Retrieved 2009-07-07.
  7. ^ Fragula caroliniana Fact Sheet (Virginia Tech)

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