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Commonly known as Karo, Parchment bark
EvergreenLeaves dark-green above, white or buff-felted beneath, 5-7cm (2-3in) long.
Brown or black
PurpleShades of purple/mauve/lilac/violetDeep purple
Tall ShrubOr small tree with ascending stems. Flowers in terminal clusters, males in clusters of up to 10, females in clusters of 5, followed by almost spherical seed capsules to 1.5cm (¾in) across
Half hardy - unheated greenhouse / mild winterHardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK except in severe winters and a risk from sudden (early) frosts. May be hardy elsewhere with wall shelter or good micro-climate. Likely to be damaged or killed in cold winters. Plant can withstand temperatures down to -5°C (23°F)
Additional FeaturesPests & DiseasesLeaf spot, powdery mildew.Place of originNew Zealand (North Island)Resistant to honey fungusThese plants have little or few problems with honey fungus.
Flower ShapeBell/LanternTubular-bell-shaped to 1cm (½in) across
HardinessFrost hardy (down to -5)
Pruning groupPruning group 1Suitable for: Deciduous and evergreen trees, and some deciduous shrubs.
Pruning: Minimal pruning required. Prune wayward or crossing branches to maintain a healthy framework.
When: When dormant in the late winter/early spring. Some in the summer/autumn to prevent bleeding of sap.
RHS group 1
Scented PlantsScented flowers
Soil ConditionsFertile moist well-drained soil
PITTOSPORUM tenuifolium 'Tom Thumb'
ASTELIA nervosa 'Red Devil'
CLIANTHUS puniceus 'Albus'
Buy Varieties of PITTOSPORUM crassifolium
grey-green leaves variegated creamy-white on the edges