Zone-pushing guabiju (Myrcianthes pungens)

Approaching an early frost this weekend, just wanted an updated pre-frost photo of each of these two seedlings. One of them is in the midst of a vigorous flush, the other has just finished hardening its late summer flush. Looks like the latter was wiser, with a frost coming soon, but it’ll be interesting to see if the tender new growth can handle a light frost at least.


Wow your guabiju is very beautifull! Congratulations! :grin:

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Just realized I didn’t post an update after the first frost (30°F), but that’s because there was basically no damage, even on the one that had lots of new leaves still tender and expanding.

A very close inspection shows a couple leaves that seem ever so slightly frost damaged:


It is a very special plant, mine is actively growing in unheated greenhouse that has between 32 and 35F.
I cannot think of any other plant that would be doing this…

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Yes, it seems very willing to grow with cold temperatures. Here’s one of mine today, some leaves still expanding:

That’s despite the temperatures being below 35°F on at least a dozen nights in the last 6 weeks, with two nights around 28°F and a handful of other nights below freezing:

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The freeze isn’t quite over yet, but the worst is behind now. Tonight could still hit 23°F (-5°C), but the low so far was 14.7°F (-9.6°C) a few nights ago. I did not protect the guabiju at all.

The one that started the fall with a flush has lost that flush, but the older leaves look OK:

The one that decided to stop growing at the start of fall shows basically zero damage:

And here are my temperatures in °F since the start of this freeze on Thursday:


Nice! I think it is still too early to tell what is the real damage but looking good. Our minimum this year was also 14F and I am looking forward to put my guabijus in ground next spring. Your reports are very encouraging. Did you have any hardy avocados out in the open during this frost period or all were covered?


Reading through @swincher 's posts during this cold spell was like a new season of your favorite show releasing on Netflix. I’ve been at the edge of my seat for days! Fingers crossed, and squarely, irrationally, and emotionally invested


I left a few uncovered, and posted some photos of those here a couple days ago:

All uncovered avocados look very, very dead, at least above ground. Even if the hardiest really can survive 14°F, I don’t think that means without serious damage, and I don’t think that means tiny trees like these. And not for such a long duration of cold.

Well, it got down to 20.5°F (-6.4°C) last night, a few degrees colder than forecast, but once it gets above freezing today it should stay there for at least another week or two, to the end of the extended forecast and hopefully beyond that. So I’ll be removing fleece and inspecting things this week, “stay tuned” for more updates :joy:! But don’t get too emotionally invested, most of the trees are probably dead above ground, even the covered ones. But there could be some pleasant surprises.


my guabijus (in pots) have been exposed to mid 20s for several hours with no damage. also in the myrtaceae family pitanga jambo (eugenia repanda) (in pot) also did not have any damage in the mid 20s.


Where did you all purchase your guabiju?

I got mine from this local nursery here in Seattle (that does also ship stuff), but it looks like it’s currently out of stock:

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Thank you.

I put my email on the waiting list