Conocarpus Species, Button Mangrove, Silver Buttonwood

Conocarpus erectus var. sericeus

Family: Combretaceae
Genus: Conocarpus (koh-noh-KAR-pus) (Info)
Species: erectus var. sericeus




Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade


Grown for foliage

Foliage Color:



12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round in hardiness zone

Suitable for growing in containers



Bloom Color:

Medium Purple

White/Near White


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Blooms repeatedly

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From woody stem cuttings

By air layering

By stooling or mound layering

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Big Pine Key, Florida

Boca Raton, Florida

Bradenton, Florida

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Islamorada, Florida

Key Colony Beach, Florida

Key Largo, Florida

Key West, Florida(2 reports)

Lithia, Florida

Marathon, Florida

Miami, Florida

Palm Harbor, Florida

Punta Gorda, Florida

Saint Augustine, Florida

Sarasota, Florida(2 reports)

Summerland Key, Florida

West Palm Beach, Florida

San Juan, Puerto Rico

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 22, 2016, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

A very popular shrub/small tree in West Palm Beach, FL. The foliage is bluish silver or silvery blue, and stands out from its green surroundings.

A tough adaptable shrub, very tolerant of drought and salt. Adaptable as to soil type and pH. Responds well to shearing. Performs well under difficult urban conditions. Also excellent for seaside plantings.

It can grow to over 60' tall. The US champion is 35'. But in the cultivated landscape it's generally a shrub under 12'.

Sooty mold is caused by the presence of honeydew produced by sucking insects. It's treated by treating the insect problem.


On May 8, 2015, blondienlex from Punta Gorda, FL wrote:

I live in Southwest Florida, Zone 10B. We have several Silver Buttonwoods planted around our air conditioning unit. They have been there since 2008. This year they have started losing leaves. They have lost so many now they are not doing what we wanted, which is to hide the a/c unit.

Any ideas as to why this is happening or what we can do to correct it are much appreciated.


On Mar 25, 2012, Bugbyte from St Augustine, FL wrote:

I live in north east Florida. The first year was great- the buttonwood flourished like crazy and survived a relatively cold winter for this area. However this winter, which was extremely mild- maybe hit 38 degrees for 2 nights, then back to the 50's sometimes 40's, the buttonwood just died. All the leaves turned brown and hard then fell off. So disappointed since it was gorgeous- about 4-5 ft in width- and beautiful.

I cut it all back and hoping for regrowth. However, I see no signs of new growth and it's been pretty warm here for over a month. Everything else is in bloom. WILL this come alive again????



On Apr 18, 2008, mrscott from Punta Gorda, FL wrote:

I was told by a Master Gardener that Silver Buttonwood could be called another mangrove. I put them around the overflow to my salt water pool because I was told they would not be harmed by the occasional overflow of salt water. However, they are susceptible to sooty mold. I was told to use copper fungicide 1/2 tsp to a quart of water in a spray bottle. Spray the affected leaves. Also, always water the plant from below, avoiding water on the leaves. I live in South Florida so it gets plenty of humidity from nature here. Since the plants have only been in for a couple of weeks I have yet to see if what I was told is really going to work on these plants but so far, I love the added color and texture to my plant beds.


On Sep 30, 2007, JaxFlaGardener from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

I bought one of these plants from a big box store and now it looks as though I will need to give it winter protection as it is native to the Florida Keys and our freezing nights will probably be too cold for it.