Rivina humilis L.
Pigeonberry, Rouge plant, Baby peppers
Phytolaccaceae (Pokeweed Family)
USDA Symbol: RIHU2
Pigeonberry is a perennial herb about 1 foot tall that grows beneath trees and shrubs. The flowers are about 1/4 inch across, white to pink, growing on the last 2–3 inches of the stems. The fruits are numerous, red and almost translucent, often appearing on the lower part of the stem while the upper part is still blooming. They are a choice food for many kinds of birds. The leaves are 1–3 inches long and wavy on the edges (248).
Pigeonberry appeals to the eye when it blooms pale pink and bears scarlet fruit simultaneously.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Size Notes: Normally no more than 1.5 feet tall, but can exceed 3 feet.
Flower: Flowers 2 inch flower spikes
Fruit: Red to orange 2-3.5 mm
Size Class: 1-3 ft.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White , Pink
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
DistributionUSA: AL , AR , AZ , FL , HI , LA , MS , NM , OK , TX
Native Distribution: Southern North America from Florida to Arizona, north to Oklahoma and Arkansas, south through Central America and the Caribbean to tropical South America
Native Habitat: In moist or alluvial soils in partial shade. Also in hilly chaparral.
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Moist and well-drained sand, sandy loam, loam, clay, and calcareous soils.
Conditions Comments: Prefers light shade and moist but well drained soil. Without supplemental water in summer, it may go dormant.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Low-growing herb layer plant, decorative fruit and flowers
Use Wildlife: Fruit-birds
Use Other: The red fruits have been used for cosmetics, hence the name Rouge Plant.
Warning: Caution: the fruit and leaves are toxic if ingested.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Deer Resistant: Moderate
PropagationPropagation Material: Seeds
Description: Seed and cuttings.
Seed Collection: Collect berries when plump and red. Allow to dry spread out.
Seed Treatment: Seeds germinate well and grow slowly.
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: Water during summer drought.
Find Seed or Plants
Order seed of this species from Native American Seed and help support the Wildflower Center.
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Native grasses for East Texas that require no mowing or watering
June 16, 2010
What native grass can I grow in deep East Texas that would require no supplemental watering and no mowing?
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National Wetland Indicator Status
From the National Suppliers DirectoryAccording to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:
Wrights Nursery - Briggs, TX
Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation Native Plant Nursery - Sanibel, FL
Far South Wholesale Nursery - Austin, TX
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - Austin, TX
Brackenridge Field Laboratory - Austin, TX
NPSOT - Fredericksburg Chapter - Fredericksburg, TX
NPSOT - Austin Chapter - Austin, TX
National Butterfly Center - Mission, TX
Herbarium Specimen(s)NPSOT 0071 Collected Sept. 12, 1990 in Bexar County by Lottie Millsaps
NPSOT 0118 Collected June 7, 1991 in Bexar County by Lottie Millsaps
Wildflower Center Seed BankLBJWC-MM-756 Collected 2010-07-25 in Hays County by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
BibliographyBibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
Bibref 281 - Shinners & Mahler's Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas (1999) Diggs, G. M.; B. L. Lipscomb; B. O'Kennon; W. F...
Bibref 248 - Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide (1984) Loughmiller, C. & L. Loughmiller
Bibref 328 - Wildflowers of Texas (2003) Ajilvsgi, Geyata.
Bibref 286 - Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country (1989) Enquist, M.
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Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Rivina humilis in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Rivina humilis in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Rivina humilis
MetadataRecord Modified: 2009-03-15
Research By: TWC Staff