Susan Fortes asked 11 years ago
I now have 4 small pernettya and have read that to have berries on they need a male ….. any ideas where i can find one and how do they differ from the female?

1 Answers

Gerry Daly Staff answered 4 years ago
Pernettya, now called gaultheria, needs to have male and female plants for berries. The females give berries, the male does not. There are hermaphrodite plants with bothe male and female flowers, such as ‘Bell’s Seedling’ and this can provide pollen, carried by bees, for females. 

Your existing plants might all be males, though this is unlikely. You should wait until the flowers appear in late spring and if there is pollen in the flowers, they are male, if not, they are female.

If there are other pernettyas in gardens nearby, the bees will bring enough pollen. And some plants produce a few male flowers in any case. But if a male is needed, vist a garden centre when the plants are flowering and you shoulbe able to choose one with pollen in flower. There is a male variety called ‘Edward Balls’. But these are generally not sold as named varieties.