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X-ray of Ugni molinae (Wild Strawberry Myrtle)

X-ray of Ugni molinae (Wild Strawberry Myrtle)


Fine Art print of X-ray Photograps of Ugni molinae (Wild Strawberry Myrtle), originally made by Tor G. Nitzelius, a world well-known dendrologist, gardener and prefect at Gothenburg's botanical garden in collaboration with Lennart Nilsson, among others. Printed on a matte 210 gram Hahnemühle photopaper with archival resistant pigmented ink.


Sweet as a wild strawberry, or bitter as medicine?


This evergreen shrub originally comes from Chile and Bolivia. It resembles myrtle and in Tor G. Nitzelius’ day, it belonged to the same genus. In its natural habitat, it grows to around two meters tall and wide, and is often used as a hedge. 


It is not hardy in Sweden; here, it is happiest if planted in a window with a lovely view. There is no consensus on whether or not the berries are tasty – some say they taste like cotton candy, wild strawberries (reflected in the Swedish name) or passionfruit.  Others say they are downright bitter. Evidently, they were a favorite of England’s Queen Victoria – but whether her preference was for bitter or sweet flavors is undocumented.


The flower and berry both look like lingonberries, but slightly bigger. It is named after Juan Ignacio Molina, who had described it back in 1782, hence the Latin name: Ugni molinae.

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