Goji berry Lycium barbarum

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Not blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Duke of Argyll's tea tree


The plant commonly referred to as goji berry is a sprawling shrub with flexible, arching branches. Its leaves are lance-shaped or oval and they grow alternately or in clusters of up to three along the stems, presenting a lush green appearance. The goji plant blooms small, purple or violet flowers which later develop into bright orange to red berries. These berries are roughly the size of a small olive and contain tiny, yellow seeds. The plant's overall appearance is quite dense and bushy, with a woody base as it matures. The fruits are known for their vibrant color and are often described as having a sweet-tangy flavor when consumed.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Goji Berry, Wolfberry, Common Matrimony Vine, Chinese Wolfberry, Tibetan Goji, Red Medlar.

    • Common names

      Lycium halimifolium, Lycium turcomanicum, Lycium vulgare, Lycium europaeum, Lycium ovatum, Lycium lanceolatum, Lycium chinense

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      6-9 feet (1.8-2.7 meters)

    • Spread

      6-9 feet (1.8-2.7 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Rich in Antioxidants: Lycium barbarum, commonly known as Goji Berry, is high in antioxidants which help to protect cells from damage due to free radicals.
    • Dietary Nutrients: Goji berries are a source of essential vitamins and minerals including vitamin C, fiber, iron, vitamin A, zinc, and antioxidants.
    • Supports Healthy Aging: The nutrients in Goji berries may help to maintain healthy skin and support overall well-being which is often associated with aging.
    • Energy Boost: Some people consume Goji berries for their potential to increase energy levels and improve athletic performance.
    • Supports Immune Function: The vitamin C and other immune-boosting nutrients present in Goji berries contribute to the support of a healthy immune system.
    • Eye Health: Goji berries contain high levels of antioxidants like zeaxanthin, which can contribute to eye health and potentially protect against macular degeneration.
    • Culinary Versatility: Goji berries can be used in a variety of dishes, ranging from sweet to savory, making them a versatile addition to the diet.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Antioxidant: Lycium barbarum, commonly known as Goji berry, contains high levels of antioxidants, which can help protect cells from oxidative stress.
    • Immune system support: The polysaccharides found in Goji berries may have immune-boosting properties, enhancing the body's resistance to illnesses.
    • Eye health: Goji berries have compounds like zeaxanthin, which are believed to protect eyes from age-related diseases such as macular degeneration.
    • Anti-aging: Due to their antioxidant content, Goji berries are often linked to anti-aging benefits by reducing oxidative damage to the skin.
    • Blood sugar regulation: Some studies suggest that Goji berries may help in controlling blood sugar levels, which can be beneficial for people with diabetes.
    • Cardiovascular health: Nutrients in Goji berries may contribute to cardiovascular health by reducing cholesterol levels and offering protection against heart disease.
    • Anti-inflammatory: The plant contains natural anti-inflammatory compounds that may help reduce inflammation in the body.
    • Neuroprotective effects: There is some evidence to suggest that Goji berries may have neuroprotective properties, potentially reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.
    • Energy and mood improvement: Traditional use suggests that Goji berries can increase energy levels and improve mood, though scientific evidence for these effects is limited.
    • Cancer prevention: While direct evidence is limited and more research is needed, the plant's high antioxidant content has led to speculation about potential cancer-preventive properties.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Lycium barbarum, commonly known as goji berry, has been used as a natural dye, offering a range of colors for textiles depending on the mordant used.
    • The wood from goji berry plants can be used in small-scale crafting, such as the making of beads or small wooden ornaments due to its hardness.
    • Farmers sometimes plant goji berry bushes as protective hedges around gardens to deter animals and pests from more delicate crops.
    • The leaves of goji berry plants can serve as feed for livestock, particularly in regions where other fodder is scarce or expensive.
    • Goji berry branches are sometimes woven into fencing or trellises, exploiting their flexible and durable nature.
    • Floral arrangements occasionally feature goji berries for their bright color and association with good health, adding an exotic touch to bouquets.
    • In some cultures, goji berries are used in traditional ceremonies or as offerings due to their perceived auspicious nature.
    • Goji berry bushes can act as soil stabilizers, preventing erosion in areas with loose or sandy soils.
    • The vibrant flowers of the goji berry plant can attract beneficial insects to gardens, such as bees and butterflies, aiding in pollination.
    • Culinary use of goji berries includes their incorporation into savory stews and soups for a hint of sweetness, aside from their common use in sweet dishes.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Goji berry is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Goji berry is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Longevity and Health: Lycium barbarum, commonly known as Goji berry, is often associated with longevity and overall health, due to its nutrient-rich berries that are high in antioxidants.
    • Protection: In some cultures, Goji berry plants are believed to ward off evil spirits and bring protection to a home or garden.
    • Prosperity: The abundant and vibrant berries of the Goji plant symbolize prosperity and the wish for a prosperous life.
    • Good Fortune: Goji berries are sometimes eaten or given as gifts during festivals as a symbol of good fortune and happiness.
    • Immune Strength: The strong immune-boosting properties of the Goji berry have led to its symbolic meaning of having a strong and resilient immune system.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 1-2 years
Spring to early summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Goji berry plants (Lycium barbarum) should be watered deeply once a week, providing about 2 gallons of water for each plant to ensure the roots have adequate moisture. During the growing season, especially in hot and dry weather, monitoring the soil moisture weekly is crucial. If the top couple of inches of soil are dry, it's time to water. In cooler climates or during the rainy season, the plants may require less frequent watering. Always avoid overwatering as goji berries do not like to sit in soggy soil.

  • sunLight

    Goji berry plants thrive in full sun, so placing them in a spot where they can receive at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily is best. They can tolerate partial shade but will produce fewer flowers and fruit when they receive less light. The most common name for Lycium barbarum is the goji berry, and for optimal growth and fruit production, a sunny spot in your garden or landscape is ideal.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Goji berries prefer a wide range of temperatures and can tolerate extremes fairly well. They can survive winter temperatures down to about -15 degrees Fahrenheit and can handle summer heat up to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Ideally, Lycium barbarum flourishes in temperate climates where temperatures range between 68 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning goji berries helps maintain a productive and manageable plant. They should be pruned in late winter or early spring before new growth starts. Remove any dead or damaged branches, thin out overcrowded areas to allow sunlight and air circulation, and cut back long branches to encourage bushier growth. Aim to prune the plants annually; this will help stimulate the growth of new branches, which will produce fruit in the following season.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Goji berry plants prefer well-drained soil with a pH between 6.5 and 8.1. A soil mix consisting of equal parts garden soil, peat moss, and perlite or sand would be ideal to ensure proper drainage and aeration.

  • plantRepotting

    Goji berry plants, also known as wolfberries, should be repotted every two years to ensure they have enough room for root growth and to refresh the soil, which prevents nutrient depletion and promotes plant health.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Goji berry plants are tolerant of a range of humidity levels but thrive best in moderate to low humidity environments, typically not requiring any special humidity adjustments when grown outdoors.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Goji berry in bright light, away from drafts, and water regularly.

    • Outdoor

      Plant Goji berry in full sun or partial shade and protect from strong winds.

    • Hardiness zone

      3-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Lycium barbarum, commonly known as Goji berry, begins its life cycle with seed germination, which is facilitated by warm, moist soil conditions and occurs in the spring. Following germination, the seedling goes through a period of vegetative growth, developing a root system and foliage, and eventually maturing into a woody perennial shrub. During late spring to summer, the plant enters its flowering stage, producing small purple or lavender flowers, which are pollinated by insects. After successful pollination, these flowers develop into bright orange-red berries by late summer into the fall. The berries can be harvested when ripe, and they contain seeds that can disperse to propagate new plants, thus continuing the life cycle. Goji berry plants can live and produce fruit for several years, with proper care and favorable conditions.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to early summer

    • Propogation: The most popular method of propagating Goji Berry, or Lycium barbarum, involves using cuttings. This is generally performed in the late spring or early summer when new growth is most pliable and conducive to rooting. To propagate via cuttings, one must select a healthy branch from the current or previous year's growth, making a cutting about 6 to 8 inches (15 to 20 centimeters) long. It is essential to make a clean cut and remove the lower leaves to expose the nodes where roots will form. The cutting is then placed in well-draining soil, ensuring that several nodes are submerged beneath the surface. To create a humid environment and assist in retaining moisture, which is critical for root development, the cutting can be covered with a plastic bag or placed in a greenhouse. Regular watering is necessary, but the soil should never be waterlogged. With proper care, roots should emerge in a few weeks, after which the new Goji Berry plant can be gradually acclimated to outdoor conditions before eventual planting in its permanent location.