Herb: Madeiran Whortleberry

Latin name: Vaccinium padifolium

Synonyms: Vaccinium arctostaphylos, Vaccinium maderense

Family: Ericaceae (Heath Family)

Edible parts of Madeiran Whortleberry:

Fruit - raw or cooked. Sweet. Black, juicy and gratefully acid. The fruit is about 12mm in diameter.

Description of the plant:


2.5 m
(8 1/4 foot)


Habitat of the herb:

Mountains at altitudes between 900 and 1500 metres.

Propagation of Madeiran Whortleberry:

Seed - sow late winter in a greenhouse in a lime-free potting mix and only just cover the seed. Stored seed might require a period of up to 3 months cold stratification. Another report says that it is best to sow the seed in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Once they are about 5cm tall, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August in a frame. Slow and difficult. Layering in late summer or early autumn. Another report says that spring is the best time to layer. Takes 18 months. Division of suckers in spring or early autumn.

Cultivation of the herb:

Mountains at altitudes between 900 and 1500 metres.

Medicinal use of Madeiran Whortleberry:

None known

Known hazards of Vaccinium padifolium:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.