Elaeagnus x ebbingei

  • Attributes: Genus: Elaeagnus Family: Elaeagnaceae Life Cycle: Perennial Recommended Propagation Strategy: Stem Cutting Country Or Region Of Origin: Hybrid of 2 Asian parents Wildlife Value: Birds are attracted to the drupes Edibility: Fruits are edible Dimensions: Height: 8 ft. 0 in. – 10 ft. 0 in. Width: 8 ft. 0 in. – 10 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits: Plant Type: Shrub Leaf Characteristics: Broadleaf Evergreen Semi-evergreen Habit/Form: Dense Oval Rounded Growth Rate: Rapid Maintenance: Low Texture: Medium

  • Cultural Conditions: Light: Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day) Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours) Soil Texture: Clay Loam (Silt) Sand Soil Drainage: Good Drainage NC Region: Coastal Piedmont Usda Plant Hardiness Zone: 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit: Fruit Color: Brown/Copper Red/Burgundy Fruit Value To Gardener: Edible Display/Harvest Time: Spring Fruit Type: Drupe Fruit Length: < 1 inch Fruit Width: < 1 inch Fruit Description: 1/2 inch reddish-brown drupes ripen in spring.
  • Flowers: Flower Color: Gray/Silver White Flower Value To Gardener: Fragrant Flower Bloom Time: Fall Flower Shape: Bell Flower Size: < 1 inch Flower Description: 1/4 inch creamy-white bell-shaped flowers bloom in axillary clusters in mid to late fall. Flowers are not particularly showy but are intensely fragrant
  • Leaves: Leaf Characteristics: Broadleaf Evergreen Semi-evergreen Leaf Color: Brown/Copper Gray/Silver Green Leaf Type: Simple Leaf Arrangement: Alternate Leaf Shape: Elliptical Leaf Margin: Undulate Hairs Present: No Leaf Length: 3-6 inches Leaf Width: 1-3 inches Leaf Description: Oval leaves are up to 4 inches long, leathery and glossy green with silvery-gray undersides when mature. New growth may be coppery in color.
  • Stem: Stem Is Aromatic: No Stem Description: Spineless twigs
  • Landscape: Landscape Location: Coastal Container Slope/Bank Landscape Theme: Drought Tolerant Garden Edible Garden Design Feature: Hedge Screen/Privacy Attracts: Songbirds Resistance To Challenges: Deer Dry Soil Salt

Evergreen Shrub Elaeagnus Gilt Edge in Mixed Border with Diablo Ninebark, Rhododendrons, Laceleaf Japanese Maple and more — like Ballard Bee Company honeybee hives!

Finding just the right variegated evergreen shrub for the garden can be tricky, but Gilt Edge Elaeagnus solves many solutions. Many with variegation will crisp up fast in too much sun. Others may have a tendency to revert to their non-variegated forms — at least on a few branches, giving them a busy, too-much-pattern look. And, quite a few variegated options simply aren’t evergreen, leaving you with see-through pile of twigs come winter instead of a gorgeous, bright privacy planting.

Elaeagnus ‘Gilt Edge’ — an under-used shrub (IMHO) — offers lots of fantastic features. This woody shrub is a relatively slow grower, putting on just a few inches each year. While labels will say that it reaches a mature size of around 4′-5′ tall, I have seen specimens that look more like large evergreen trees, so give this beauty space. Its green and bright yellow leaves tolerate quite a bit of sun — actually performing better in full sun than in shade — but they will do just fine in darker winter corners if they get sun the rest of the year. And, those bright leaves keep the garden cheerful even on the gloomiest, short days. They even glow in moonlight and reflected snow.

In autumn, ‘Gilt Edge’ (and many other Elaeagnus) will surprise you with tiny, mostly hidden flowers that are highly fragrant. A few days ago, as I was planting tiny Iris reticulata in a nearby bed, I kept smelling something incredibly sweet. After scrambling around for a bit, I realized it was this simple shrub perfuming the air. In years past, I had either missed the shrub’s bloom or it simply hadn’t matured enough to begin blooming. If you plant one, be patient, it may take a few years before blooming.

Gilt Edge makes quite a statement with such brilliant, multi-colored leaves, so take care combining it with other “busy” foliage. Too much variegation can make for a garden eyesore. However, planting in combination with solid green ferns and contrasting purples or reds can make for a gorgeous look.

Gilt Edge Elaeagnus combines beautifully with Glass Gardens NW Spear art

Adding in vertical art forms dappled into the round growth habit and oblong leaf forms of this plant helps both the shrub and the art stand out. Check out photos of this same shrub and garden bed transformed and enhanced by inserting pieces of Glass Gardens NW spears in the bed. (Updated 3/17/2017: Glass Gardens NW was sold to new owners in 2016. We have received a number of complaints following this sale, so we are no longer linking out to their website.)

Elaeagnus does have a couple of potentially detracting features. It is fairly slow growing, so have patience; this baby’s worth it. As well, it does grow thorns on its woody stems. It doesn’t put on a lot of them like a barberry, but be watchful for them. (And remember: thorny plants can be a great thing to plant outside your teenager’s window or in any spot to say “keep out”.) In spring, when the new growth emerges, this shrub kind of looks like something is seriously wrong with it. The new leaves are speckled and have a silvery tone to them that some mistake for pest damage and die-back beginning to happen. Really, this is just its awkward phase, and those new leaves will metamorphose into their gorgeous mature form in just a few days.

Very little is required to care for this shrub. Prune it as you would any woody tree-like plant. Ideally, it is not sheared. Shaded interior branches will defoliate, creating more of a tree-like form, over time. Remove any frost damaged leaves and branches in spring. To train, stake younger branches for one season to encourage wider or privacy shapes. Be sure to check ties and stakes regularly, removing them as soon as possible.


Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’

Elaeagnus are tough, cold hardy and extremely adaptable small trees or large shrubs that have become popular garden plants in many regions of the globe. They’re indigenous to Asia, with a few species found in southern Europe and North America. Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’, the cultivar featured in this month’s plant profile, is a hybrid of garden origin. ‘Gilt Edge’ is a shrub that grows three to four metres tall and almost as wide. Dense and bushy from the base, the plants are clothed in robust, leathery leaves with an attractive variegation. Each leaf is elliptic in shape, grows to 10 cm in length and is rich green with a wide golden-yellow margin. The under surface of the leaves are a distinctive silver shade with prominent rust coloured scales. Tubular, cream or white ‑ flowers, about 10 to 12 mm long, appear from the leaf axils in autumn. Although rather inconspicuous the ‑ flowers are sweetly scented and are often identified by their fragrance rather than seen by the eye. Interestingly, the ‑ flowers are also covered in tiny silver scales, like the underside of the leaves. Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’ survives in an extensive range of growing conditions. Sun or shade, dry impoverished soils and close proximity to the sea are all challenging areas to which the plant is able to adapt, however, it most enjoys rich, well drained soils and sunshine. These conditions foster the best possible garden performance. Regular feeding with a balanced garden fertiliser that is high in nitrogen encourages vigorous and healthy growth with lush foliage. Regular clipping during the growing season keeps the shrubs neat, tidy and compact; left to grow unchecked they can reach huge proportions, ultimately becoming rather large and unwieldy.

Garden uses are numerous and varied, although the primary function of the plant is as an evergreen hedge or screen for cold, frosty, exposed gardens. It clips into interesting topiary specimens of varying shape and form, and is an attractive container subject in large pots, especially in areas where many other plants are deciduous. The foliage always makes a bold statement in winter and early spring in areas ravaged by severe cold.

Sprigs of the foliage last well in water and are popular with ‑ oral artists. A winner in all cold, windswept gardens around the land this Elaeagnus could just be the answer to many a gardener’s prayer. Perhaps the name ‘Gilt Edge’ refers not only to the golden variegated border on each leaf but also to the virtues and versatility of this most rewarding garden shrub.

Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’ at a glance
• A tough, cold hardy and enduring evergreen shrub
• Attractive variegated leaves and inconspicuous ‑ flowers
• Makes a dense, neat and tidy hedge or screening plant.

Elaeagnus Ebbingei

Elaeagnus x ebbingei hedging is a very versatile form of hedging useful in many situations. It is also known as Ebbinge’s Silverberry or the Russian Olive.

Why should I plant an Elaeagnus hedge?

Elaeagnus x Ebbingei is a relatively popular evergreen hedging plant for small and medium size hedges and is usually easily recognisable due to is leathery leaves with silvery underside. It is hardy and fast growing and does well in coastal situations.

How tall will Elaeagnus grow?

Elaeagnus are suitable for small to medium size hedges although we do see Elaeagnus hedges up to 6ft in height. A single Elaeagnus can also be grown as a striking evergreen shrub in the garden.

How quickly will an Elaeagnus hedge grow?

Elaeagnus are are relatively quick growing and if left untrimmed will put on around 1-1.5ft (30-45cm) in height per year. Once your hedge has reached its desired height it should be trimmed at that height accordingly to maintain its size and increase its density. This will slow down the upward growth of your hedge and encourage growth sideways to make a denser hedge and make it substantially easier to clip annually.

When should I clip or trim an Elaeagnus hedge?

An Elaeagnus hedge will need to be clipped annually in the spring or autumn as you would with any other hedge.

How far apart should I plant Elaeagnus hedging plants?

Elaeagnus should be planted 2ft (60cm) apart regardless of how tall or short they are when you buy them and careful preparation of the planting site is important. See section below on how to look after your Elaeagnus hedge after planting.

How do I look after my Elaeagnus hedge after planting?

Although Elaeagnus plants are tolerant and will put up with most soil types, we recommended that the planting soil is mixed with compost to give the plants the best environment to grow in for their first year. After planting, your Elaeagnus hedge should be watered regularly during its first year to give it the best chance of survival and this is especially important if your hedge is being planted in the drier summer months.

How do I water my Elaeagnus hedge?

Watering an Elaeagnus hedge is especially important if you are planting during the summer or a dry period. For watering, we recommend using leaky hose (sometimes described as porous pipe) which can be connected to your existing hose pipe and will slowly leak water onto the roots of your hedge in a controlled manner to ensure that it soaks in and your hedge becomes properly watered. Leaky hose is cheap, easy to install and very effective. See our Accessories page for more details on leaky hose.

Is Elaeagnus tolerant of different soil types?

Elaeagnus will tolerate almost all soil types (except very waterlogged soils) making it very versatile and is tolerant of coastal climates making it suitable for planting if you live near the sea.

Does Elaeagnus like full sun or shade?

Elaeagnus will grow well in full sunshine and is also shade tolerant making it very versatile to different situations.

We usually stock a selection of different sizes of Elaeagnus throughout the year.

For more information on our availability of Elaeagnus hedging or if you have any questions or queries about existing Elaeagnus hedges or need advice about planting a new Elaeagnus hedge, please call us on 01252 714552 or email

Ebbing’s Silverberry foliage

Ebbing’s Silverberry foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

* This is a “special order” plant – contact store for details

Height: 10 feet

Spread: 10 feet


Hardiness Zone: 6

Other Names: Oleaster, Silverthorn


A large, dense evergreen shrub that is very adaptable and drought resistant; subtle, creamy white flower clusters in fall have a wonderful fragrance; a great, fast growing landscape shrub that can be maintained as a screen or hedge; does not self-seed

Ornamental Features

Ebbing’s Silverberry has attractive silver-spotted dark green foliage which emerges coppery-bronze in spring. The glossy pointy leaves are highly ornamental and remain dark green throughout the winter. It features subtle clusters of fragrant creamy white bell-shaped flowers along the branches from mid to late fall. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Ebbing’s Silverberry is a dense multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with a more or less rounded form. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Ebbing’s Silverberry is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Hedges/Screening
  • Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Ebbing’s Silverberry will grow to be about 10 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 10 feet. It has a low canopy, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 30 years.

This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under average home landscape conditions. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for xeriscaping or the moisture-conserving landscape. It is particular about its soil conditions, with a strong preference for clay, alkaline soils, and is able to handle environmental salt. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This particular variety is an interspecific hybrid. It can be propagated by cuttings; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Ebbing’s Silverberry makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. Because of its height, it is often used as a ‘thriller’ in the ‘spiller-thriller-filler’ container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag – this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

* This is a “special order” plant – contact store for details

Elaeagnus Ebbingei Viveleg Oleaster

Available Sizes to buy online All Prices Include VAT Height Excluding Pot:
40-60cm (1ft 3-1ft 11)

Plant shape: Bush

Pot size: 10 Litres

Plant ID: 3692 64
Was £50.00 40% Off – Now £30.00
Height Excluding Pot:
80-100cm (2ft 7-3ft 3)

Pot size: 20 Litres

Plant ID: 3693 2
Was £125.00 40% Off – Now £75.00
Height Excluding Pot:
1.6-1.7m (5ft 2-5ft 6)

Plant shape: ½ standard

Pot size: 30 Litres

Plant ID: 3795 24
Click to view photo of this size Was £145.00 40% Off – Now £87.00
Buy 2 for £277.00 40% Off – Now £166.20 Height Excluding Pot:
2.4m (7ft 10)

Plant shape: Full standard

Trunk height: 1.7 m

Pot size: 55 Litres

Plant ID: 5706 64
Click to view photo of this size

Elaeagnus Ebbingei Viveleg Oleaster

This image displays plant 2.4 m tall.

Height Excluding Pot:
2.4m (7ft 10)

Plant shape: Full standard

Trunk height: 1.7 m

Pot size: 55 Litres

Plant ID: 5706 64
Was £340.00 40% Off – Now £204.00

Was £340.00 40% Off – Now £204.00

For OVERSIZED Plant Orders delivery will be one charge of £60 for Greater & Outer London or £95 or £145 for selected Further Distance postcodes. To check delivery cost add your plants to basket, then you can type your postcode in our Quick Delivery Price Check.

Elaeagnus Ebbingei Viveleg or Oleaster Viveleg, is a new variety of Silverberry. Grown for its attractive variegated foliage, this evergreen shrub can be used for hedging in exposed spots or as a boundary plant.
The evergreen foliage provides year-round interest. Each of the leaves has a dark green center, framed by an irregular yellow margin. The young growth unfolds in more muted shades, appearing as greyish-green and creamy beige. Unlike other Oleaster varieties, Vivileg has leaves with a silver underside. The foliage is leathery and glossy, oval in shape. The copper-brown branches have a slightly upright, bushy habit. During late summer through to autumn, minuscule, inconspicuous blossoms appear. The blossoms are hard to notice, but they do release a pleasant scent and are followed by cherry-like, edible fruits.
Versatile and adaptable, Elaeagnus Ebbingei Viveleg can grow in any type of soil, as long as it is well drained. It tolerates both full sun and partial shade. Avoid overly wet conditions. Suitable for coastal areas, as it does not mind wind or salt.
A naturally occurring hybrid first spotted in a nursery in France, Oleaster Viveleg shares its robustness with close relatives. Very hardy in the United Kingdom, it can survive even if the temperatures drop to 10 degrees below zero. Even if it appears that its foliage is severely damaged by frost, this cultivar will have beautiful young growth in the spring. Apply mulch in the winter to protect its root system. Fast-growing and vigorous, Oleaster Vivileg can grow to be up to 2.4 metres high and around 1.5 to 2 metres wide. Compact even when fully mature, this cultivar is ideally suited for small gardens. When it comes to keeping its vase-shaped, upright habit in optimal shape, this ornamental shrub is almost maintenance free. Apart from removing congested or dead stems, there is not much else that needs to be done.
The dense, evergreen foliage and attractive shape make Elaeagnus Ebbingei Viveleg a welcome addition to any garden. This shrub lends itself well to mixed shrub borders and hedges, but it can also be used as a border plant. Its showy variegated leaves can be complemented by flowering specimens, such as the elegant Olearia Macrodonta or the bright Sunset variety of Rock Rose.

You maybe interesred in more evergreen variegated cultivars such as Prunus Lusitanica Variegata, Pittosporum Tenuifolium Variegatum or Euonymus Japonica Bravo.

FREQUENTLY BOUGHT WITH >>Elaeagnus QuicksilverElaeagnus x EbbingeiElaeagnus Angustifolia OleasterAbelia X Grandiflora – Glossy Abelia

Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’ (Oleaster ‘Gilt Edge’)

Botanical name

Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’

Other names

Oleaster ‘Gilt Edge’


Elaeagnus Elaeagnus

Variety or Cultivar

‘Gilt Edge’ _ ‘Gilt Edge’ is a dense, rounded, medium-sized evergreen shrub bearing broadly ovate, dark green leaves with irregular yellow margins.. Small, fragrant, silvery flowers are sometimes followed by orange berries.




Flowers are fragrant.


Bushy, Rounded

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Insignificant or absent, White in Autumn

Green, Yellow in All seasons

How to care

Watch out for

Specific pests

Elaeagnus sucker

Specific diseases

Coral spot

General care


Pruning group 9

Propagation methods

Seed, Semi-hardwood cuttings

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Where to grow

Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’ (Oleaster ‘Gilt Edge’) will reach a height of 4m and a spread of 4m after 10-20 years.

Suggested uses

Hedging/Screens, Beds and borders, Drought Tolerant, Cottage/Informal, Banks and Slopes, Low Maintenance, Foliage only


Grow in well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Well-drained, Moist but well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral


Partial Shade, Full Sun


North, South, East, West


Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

USDA zones

Zone 9, Zone 8, Zone 7, Zone 6

Defra’s Risk register #1

Plant name

Elaeagnus x ebbingei ‘Gilt Edge’ (Oleaster ‘Gilt Edge’)

Common pest name

Namangan longhorn beetle

Scientific pest name

Xylotrechus namanganensis



Current status in UK


Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

Impact (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

General biosecurity comments

Polyphagous pest originating in Asia; some uncertainty regarding risk to UK; further work needed to assess climatic suitability.

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read “Don’t risk it” advice here

Suspected outbreak?

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit: https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/

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