Growing Escallonia

All Escallonia are bee friendly and although their flowers are relatively small they are attractive to bees.

Escallonia ‘Apple Blossom’ illustrated top right is a compact variety, with a profusion of scented flowers from early to mid summer which are white, flushed apple-blossomed pink H4 hardy which means it needs to be planted in a sheltered spot, 2.5 x 2 (height.) Apple Blossom has some of the largest flowers in this group.

Escallonia ‘Donard Seedling’ a vigorous shrub which has flowers white ,flushed pink, early to mid summer from pink buds and has very attractive glossy foliage. ‘Donard Seedling’ is one of the hardiest of Escallonia to grow which makes it suitable for colder inland gardens, but still plant away from cold winds. Growing to 3 x 2.5 m

Escallonai ‘Iveyi’ illustrated above center is a RHS award winning variety with larger, dark green foliage and pure white flowers, but it is only H4 hardy and so only suitable for sheltered and coastal gardens. Overall size 3 x 3m. It is one of the most popular Escallonia to grow and it’s flowers are described as scented.

Other varieties of Escallonia are E.Leucantha which is large 3.5 x 3m with white flowers but needs the shelter of south facing wall is H4 hardy. E. Virgata is similar, but smaller and H4 hardy and E. ‘Langleyensis’ which is evergreen or semi evergreen and more arching in appearance with pink/red flowers and again ** hardy. There are only two other varieties of Escallonia which are H5 which is hardy to -10-15 degrees namely, E. ‘C.F.Ball’ which is bright red flowering and ‘Edinensis’ pink/red flowering.

This means if you garden on the coast, or in a sheltered spot, there are many several varieties of Escallonia which may suit your garden but if you plot is exposed or cold, the main choice is ‘Donard Seedling’ which is lovely.

There are now some dwarf varieties of Escallonia such as E.’Pink Pixie’ which as the name suggests has lovely pink flowers, (not scented) the same glossy leaves but only grows to around 80cms x 80cms and is fast growing. Ideal for container growing on a patio or balcony. Similar is E. Pink Elle, a little larger reaching 100cms, and E. rubra ‘Pygmaea’ about 75cms.

There is a variety with golden leaves, E. laevis ‘Gold Ellen’, although to my mind it doesn’t look any where near as handsome as those varieties with the dark green glossy leaves.

If Escallonia is not the shrub for your garden, check out shrubs and bushes; spring flowering shrubs; summer flowering shrubs; shrubs with autumn and winter interest; and evergreen shrubs.

For an alternative similar shrub, as in an evergreen flowering shrub with scented flowers, but which is more hardy, try Choisya.

Check out Fast Growing Evergreen Shrubs for more planting ideas.

Variety Profile

Offering both structural and ornamental value to the garden, this dwarf form of Escallonia gives us a bold and refreshing alternative to more traditional hedging species such as box or lonicera. The leaves are slightly larger in size, deep green and glossy for a cool, contrasting border to garden beds, drives or pathways. In addition masses of dainty bell-like flowers, in a strikingly vibrant shade of pink, appear throughout the summer.

A neat, compact habit – easy to grow and hardy!

Cultural Care

Low water requirements once established requiring only occasional deep watering during extended periods of heat. Grows well in most soil types which are well draining. Fertilise with a slow release fertiliser during early spring. A light pruning after flowering to maintain neat shape. If used for hedging space plants approximately 50cm apart and trim as required.

Plant Uses

This escallonia is a versatile plant which when added to a garden border or bed will give year round structure and appeal. It is, however, particularly suited to any hedging or topiary work as it responds well to regular, light clippings producing a dense mat of foliage. For this reason it is ideal for creating a low, ornamental hedge for defining garden beds, paths or driveways.

Individual plants can also be trimmed into topiary shapes to provide focal points in the garden or at the entrance/exit of doorways and paths. Grow in decorative containers for patios and entertainment areas.

If used for hedging, space plants approximately 60cm apart or alternatively, for quicker results, spacing can be reduced to as little as 40cm apart.

Escallonia Apple Blossom Hedging

This medium to large growing evergreen shrub with its bushy dense growth has attractive glossy dark green leaves which provide a backdrop for a profusion of apple blossom pink flowers over an extended period throughout the summer.

Originating from North and South America it is one of a variety of plants from the family Escalloniaceae which are evergreen plants with differing shades of green foliage and various coloured blossoms.

Escallonia Apple Blossom can be useful as an ornamental shrub to add colour to an otherwise dull garden or is superb as an informal hedge, however it does need some shelter from harsh weather situations as it is not fully hardy.

Escallonia Apple Blossom can be a beautiful hedging plant, with the tubular bell-shaped flowers which are good for attracting bees and especially with the heavenly scent of balsam given off after a rain shower or when trimming so should best be planted if possible where the full effects can be appreciated. This of course may be more applicable where it is used as an individual specimen shrub. An ideal shrub for coastal areas as it will tolerate the salty air Escallonia Apple Blossom will grow to a height of 200cm ideally being a minimum of 60cm. Growth rate is between 30-40cm per year and trimming would normally take place in autumn.

Since it is supplied as a pot grown plant Escallonia Apple Blossom can go in the ground at any time of year as there is little or no disturbance to the root system so no trauma to the plant. Preparation can be done prior to planting but if the weather should take a turn for the worse then as long as the plants are kept watered they can remain in the pots until such time as planting is possible.

Please contact us if you would like any more information or have any other queries and we will endeavour to help.

Apple Blossom Amaryllis

Amaryllis and Paperwhites, are favorites for the winter holiday season. These bulbs are easy to grow with spectacular results. They need no chilling, and once planted can bloom in as little as 3-5 weeks for Paperwhites, and just 6-8 weeks for Amaryllis.

Tips For Growing Amaryllis (Easy!)

  • When planting your bulb, select a pot that allows about one inch all around, and at least two inches below the bulb.
  • Use a good quality soil-less potting mix or a blend of one part peat moss and one part coarse sand for planting.
  • Make sure to not plant too deep and leave the top of the bulb (“shoulder’) just slightly above the soil.
  • Water in your newly planted bulbs thoroughly, but don’t water again until the new sprout is well out of the bulb.
  • Once you have a sprout a few inches long, water regularly and soon your amaryllis will produce its spectacular, huge flowers.
  • Remember to turn the pot regularly to make sure the stalk grows straight, as these bulbs have a tendency to grow towards the light.

More guidance for growing Amaryllis: Amaryllis: Get Big, Beautiful Blooms Indoors

Tips For Growing Paperwhites

  • Select a container that about 3 – 4 inches deep (8 – 10 cm), without drainage holes.
  • Add 1-2 inches of gravel, stones or marble to the bottom of the container.
  • Place your paperwhite bulbs, pointed side up, on the gravel layer. Fit them in tightly, they don’t mind being crowded.
  • Add water to the container so that it just reaches the base of the bulbs. Don’t cover the entire bulb with water, or it could rot.
  • Check your bulbs daily and add water if needed.
  • When roots begin to develop, you can move your bulbs to a sunny window.
  • After they begin flowering, move the plants out of direct sunlight, so the blooms will last longer.

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