This page has been created for people who want to learn more about plants, especially in the
context of their taxonomy (Latin names, etc.). This is by no means an exhaustive list of
all available Web resources for a particular genus.
Visit for links to my other botanical web pages.
This month's genus:
Myrica sp. Photo taken by J. Forman.
May not be used without permission.
Number of Species: more than 12
Root: named by Linnaeus, unsure of meaning
Species in the genus Myrica are shrubs bearing aromatic fruits. These shrubs can be good choices for native North American plantings, but a few species that have been introduced to Europe, including M. cerifera (Wax Myrtle), have naturalized. Several species in this genus are separated by some into the genus Morella.
Here are a few links to images and descriptions of different Myrica species:
- Read about the herbal uses of M. cerifera at Botanical.com. Read more about the herbal uses and history at the King's American Dispensatory website.
- Native to the Iberian Peninsula, M. faya (Firetree) has become invasive in Hawaii since it was introduced in the 19th century.
- Several species of Myrica have a waxy coating on their fruit and leaves that can be harvested to use in candlemaking. Here's a link to page with information on "Alternative Lighting" using plant products, including bayberry wax.
- Heywood, V.H., ed. Flowering Plants of the World. New York, Oxford University Press: 1993.
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