Gaultheria Ovatifolia is a species of shrub that belongs to the family Heath.
Overview of Gaultheria Ovatifolia
• It is known by the common names western tea berry and Oregon spicy wintergreen.
• It is native to western North America.
• It spreads from British Columbia to California.
• It grows in high mountain forests.
• This is a small and low shrub.
• It has stems about 35 centimeters.
• They have pointed and oval-shaped leaves.
• They are 2 to 3 centimeters long.
• They are green and bear small, solitary bell-shaped flowers.
• The color of the flowers are in shades of white to very light pink with reddish bracts.
• The flowers hang like tiny bells.
• The fruit is a red berrylike capsule.
Scientific Classification for Gaultheria Ovatifolia
– Kingdom: Plantae
– (unranked): Angiosperms
– (unranked): Eudicots
– (unranked): Asterids
– Order: Ericales
– Family: Ericaceae
– Genus: Gaultheria
– Species: G. ovatifolia
Wintergreen oil is used topically for:
• muscle and joint discomfort,
• poor circulation,
• heart disease,
• hair care,
• ulcers and
• broken or bruised bones.
Growing Conditions for Gaultheria Ovatifolia
• Loosen the soil prior to planting the wintergreen.
• Plant it in early spring.
• Use a garden fork to create a fine planting medium.
• The soil should be free of large rocks and debris.
• Wintergreen prefers soil with a pH between 4.0 and 6.5.
• If the pH is below 4.0, addition of lime to the soil is recommended.
• For a pH above 6.5, addition of peat moss is recommended.
• Prepare a hole for the wintergreen shrub.
• It should be twice the width of its container and with same depth.
• Space the holes 12 to 15 inches apart.
• Remove the wintergreen and deposit it in the center of the hole.
• Back-fill the hole and pat the soil around it.
• This will help to release air pockets.
• Water the wintergreen at a rate of 1 inch per week.
• Maintain moist soil.
• This should be up to a depth of 1 inch at all times.
Caring Conditions for Gaultheria Ovatifolia
• Water the plant to moisten the soil up to a depth of 4 to 6 inches.
• Keep the soil consistently moist.
• Fertilize wintergreen with an organic fertilizer in the early spring.
• Spread a 1-inch layer of compost or aged manure over the surface of the soil.
• Maintain a 2-inch layer of mulch around the plant.
• Use an organic mulching material such as peat moss or pine straw.
• Harvest leaves from your wintergreen plant from June to September.
• Snip the leaves from the plant with a pair of sharpened and sterilized pruning shears.