Drimys winteri
Common name: 
Winter's Bark
Pepper Bark
DRIM-is WIN-ter-i (WIN-te-ree)
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Evergreen tree or often a multi-stemmed shrub, to about 25 ft (7.5 m) tall, but reaches 50 ft (15 m) in its native habitat, branches droop, bark mahogany red, aromatic.  Leaves simple, alternate, leathery, elliptical to oblong-lanceolate, 3-20 cm long and 1-8 cm wide, margin entire, bright glossy green above, whitish bloom below; peppery odor when crushed.  Flowers with cream to white 5-7 petals, sepals red, as many as 10 flowers per cluster; blooms in winter or spring, fragrant.  Fruit bluish then glossy black.
  • Sun or light shade, well-drained soil
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 8     Native to Argentina and Chile
  • winteri: after Captain William Winter, who sailed with Sir Francis Drake.  He collected bark for medicinal and culinary purposes (Coombes, 1985).
  • Winter's Bark: The aromatic bark is used to treat certain stomach problems.  Reportedly natives recommended a tea made of the bark of this plant to cure Captain Winter's stomach problems, the tea cured his ailment, hence the name.
  • Aurora, Oregon: Oregon State Univ., North Willamette Research and Extension Center
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit, in native habitat (southern Chile)

    plant habit, in native habitat (southern Chile)

  • plant habit, shrub

    plant habit, shrub

  • leaves


  • stem, buds

    stem, buds

  • flowers


  • leaves and young fruit

    leaves and young fruit

  • leaves and mature fruit

    leaves and mature fruit

  • trunk, bark

    trunk, bark