Gaultheria tetramera
Common name: 
Si lie bai zhu (Chinese)
gawl-THEE-ree-a te-trah-ME-ruh
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Broadleaved erect evergreen shrub, occasionally procumbent, usually 30-40 inches [80-100 cm] tall; twigs cylindrical, with stiff hairs.  Leaves alternate, simple, broadly elliptic to lanceolate or obovate, 3-7 cm long and 1-2.5 cm wide, leathery, base wedge-shaped (cuneate), tip acute, distinctly mucronate (tipped with a small, sharp point), margin bristly-serrate, upper surface smooth, lower surface has scattered stiff hairs and later short bumps or projections (papillose).  Flowers four-parted (i.e., tetramera), urn-shaped, white tinged with green, about 5 mm, 8-10 stamens; flowers usually in axillary clusters (2-10 flowered), 2.5 cm long, appear in late spring.  Fruit rounded, 6 mm diam., blue-purple, with bloom.
  • Sun or part shade
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 7      Native to southeast Tibet and China's western Yunnan province
  • tetramera: apparently a reference to the 4-parted flowers
  • Federal Way, Washington:  Rhododendron Species Foundation and Botanical Garden,
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit, fruiting

    plant habit, fruiting

  • leaves and fruit

    leaves and fruit

  • leaves


  • fruit cluster

    fruit cluster