Do you like lemon, lime and bitters?

City Farm - “Petalostigma pachyphyllum”, (commonly known as “Thick leaved Quinine bush”)


Our Plant of the Month is “Petalostigma pachyphyllum”, (commonly known as “Thick leaved Quinine bush”). This is a multi-stemmed shrub to around two metres, with the young growth being hairy.  Leaves are alternate and leathery to 7cm.

The flowers from this plant are yellowish in clusters and bloom in winter to spring. The yellow fruit changes to orange-red in spring and is very astringent when ripe. The fruit from this plant is used in  the drink “Lemon, lime and bitters”.

Traditionally, the bark and roots of the quinine tree would be prepared into liquids for treating diabetes and other illnesses, including sores and headaches. The fresh fruit can be used to ease toothaches, malarial symptoms (including fever) and as a birth control.

This plant enjoys full sun to part shade and is loved by birds and bees.

Cooloola City Farm Nursery is a cash-only organisation, located opposite the Community Centre on Tin Can Bay Road and is open 8am-3pm, Tuesday – Thursday. Call: 07 5486 2304, email: or visit:

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