Schinus molle L.

Pepper Tree

Sp. Pl. 388 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Broad-crowned tree to c. 12 m high; branchlets pendent; sap aromatic. Leaves narrow-ovate in outline, 8–25 cm long, 4–9 cm wide; leaflets 15–41, alternate, lanceolate to somewhat falcate, 15–60 mm long, 3–10 mm wide, entire to dentate. Pedicels 1–2.5 mm long. Calyx 0.5–1 mm long, broadly lobed to c. midway, minutely ciliate; petals obovate, 1.5–2.5 mm long; disc lobed; male flowers with stamens alternately c. 0.5 and 1.5 mm long; female flowers with staminodes subsessile to 0.3 mm long, styles 0.3–0.5 mm long. Drupes c. spherical 5–7 mm diam., shining, pink or bluish. Flowers throughout the year.

*CVU, *DunT, *EGL, *EGU, *GipP, *Gold, *HNF, *HSF, *MuF, *MuM, *MSB, *NIS, *OtP, *VRiv, *VVP, *WaP, *Wim. Moderately common on heavier soils, chiefly in northern Victoria, but also in drier areas of the south. Widely planted, persisting on abandoned farms, rail sidings etc.

The seeds have been used as a substitute for pepper.

Source: Walsh, N.G. (1999). Anacardiaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Neville Walsh, 2014-09-12
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Sapindales
family Anacardiaceae
genus Schinus
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Schinus molle in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Schinus molle in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Murray Mallee present naturalised
Wimmera present naturalised
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Victorian Riverina present naturalised
Murray Scroll Belt present naturalised
Murray Fans present naturalised
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present naturalised
Warrnambool Plain present naturalised
Goldfields present naturalised
Central Victorian Uplands present naturalised
Dundas Tablelands present naturalised
Northern Inland Slopes present naturalised
East Gippsland Lowlands present naturalised
East Gippsland Uplands present naturalised
Highlands-Southern Fall present naturalised
Highlands-Northern Fall present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
Northern Territory
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory