Prinsepia sinensis (Oliv.) Bean - Cherry prinsepia.

Taxonomic position.

Family Rosaceae Juss., genus Prinsepia Royle


Plagiospermum sinense Oliv., Sinoplagiospermum sinense (Oliv.) S. Rauschert

Morphology and biology.

Shrub up to 3 m tall. Stems are covered with light gray bark that tends to exfoliate in a ribbon-like manner. Branches are grayish brown. Thorns are 8-10 mm long, straight or bent, opposite the leaves. Leaf blades are 3.5-8 cm long and 1-2.5 cm wide, lanceolate, ovate- or oblong-lanceolate with a broad or narrow-cuneate base, sharp and cuspate at the tip, with hamose or flat, whole or sometimes finely hirsute-ciliate edges, dark green and dull above and of lighter, dull tint below. Stipules are subulate, about 5 mm long. Flowers are arranged in groups of (1)3-8 into umbellate axillary inflorescences. Pedicels are bare. Hypanthium is bowl-shaped, bare. Sepals are about 2 mm long, broadly ovate, prickly ciliate. Petals are 5-6 mm long, broadly elliptical, light yellow, bare, deflected. Fruits are 1.5-2 cm in diameter, juicy, globular drupes, of rich red color or yellow with red tint. Stone is deeply striated, flattened from the sides. Entomophilous. Ornitochore. Propagated by seed, layers, softwood and woody cuttings. Seed should be stored at 2-4╓C for 4 months. Blossoms in May; bears fruit in August. 2n = 32.


Occurs in southern littoral areas of the Russian Far East, China and Korea.


Mesophyte. Photophilous. Occurs as single plants or in small groups under the canopy of sparse cedar-broadleaf, broadleaf and mixed forests, as well as along riverbanks on sandy-pebbly deposits among bush thickets. Prefers light-textured soils.

Utilization and economic value.

Used as a food (fruit) and ornamental plant. Fruit are edible, sour, resempling cherry in taste. It is a valuable ornamental plant, especially in its fruit-bearing phase.

Reference citations:

Brezhnev D.D., Korovina O.N. 1981. Wild relatives of cultivated plants in the flora of the USSR. Leningrad: Kolos. 223 pp. (In Russian)
Kharkevich S.S., ed. 1996. Vascular plants of the Soviet Far East. Vol. 8. Leningrad: Nauka. 245-246 pp. (In Russian)
Koropachinskiy I.Yu., Vstovskaya T.N. 2002. Woody plants of the Asian part of Russia. Novosibirsk: Publishing House of SB RAS, Branch Geo. 349-350 pp. (In Russian)

© I.G. Chukhina


Web design —
Kelnik studios