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sea grape 250Although not related to cultivated grapes, the sea grape (Coccoloba uvifera) bears red and purple clustered fruit. The edible fruits ripen separately and are an important food source for birds and small mammals. Pioneers traditionally used the berries for jams and jellies, and also found the wood to be a good cooking fuel. Leaves are large, round and leathery, with prominent veins that are often red. Reaching heights up to 50 feet, sea grapes are common in coastal strands and tropical hardwood hammocks from peninsular Florida to South America.

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