Goji berries are known by the botanical name of Lycium barbarum. The small red berries grow on what is best described as a ‘vine-shrub’. It is not a vine as such with tendrils, but rather (in its natural state) more like a shrub with stems that can be both straight and upright, or lowered and sprawling. The plant’s shape can be manicured for ease of growing by cutting. Although there are many recorded varieties of Lycium growing throughout the world and much research has been done on their miraculous healing qualities, the ‘mother of all Lyciums’ is reputed to have originated from an area around Tibet. In fact, so great did the Chinese believe this berry to be, that they brought it into their country and used it not only medicinally, but also in their day-to-day cooking, commonly in their vegetable and meat soups. Because the goji berry ‘fruits’ only once a year (during summer), the berry is dried for year-round use. Lyciums generally have an extensive root system, which gives them the ability to ‘search and seek’ the earth for the nutrients they require to survive. This extensive root system not only gives the goji berry the ability to survive incredible climatic and environmental influences (i.e. temperatures ranging from -27ºC to 39ºC plus) but also allows it to ‘spring back to life’ after its winter dormancy of ‘seeming death’.
Flowering time Summer
Planting time Late summer to autumn
Height and Spread 10ft x 13ft or more
Aspect Full sun