Leptospermum scoparium ‘Helene Strybing’
Also known as Tea Tree. This lovely, flowering, evergreen shrub is from the myrtle family. It has small, needle-like green leaves with a short spine tip. The flowers are a rich, deep pink and are aromatic when crushed. The petals surround a hard central cone or cup that matures to a woody seed capsule that hangs on for a long time after the petals drop. It blooms in compact clusters in the Spring and Fall.
L. scoparium requires little to moderate watering and does best in well-drained, slightly acidic soil. If there is poor drainage, it can succumb quickly to root rot. Right after the plant has finished flowering, you can prune it to maintain it’s shape, encourage bushier growth, and promote more blooms. Be careful not to cut into bare wood or new growth is unlikely to sprout. Other than some seasonal maintenance, this plant does not require a lot of pruning.
Native to Australia and New Zealand. Plants thrive in seacoast conditions. They are great for coastal gardens, Mediterranean gardens, gravel and rock gardens, and containers. L. scoparium can grow up to 8-10’H x 8-12’ W.
In New Zealand, this plant is cultivated for mānuka honey, which is produced when honeybees gather the nectar from its flowers.
This is a great plant that attracts various pollinators. It is deer and drought tolerant. It’s adaptability to poor, infertile soil also makes this plant suitable for cultivation in Mediterranean climates.
We are currently growing L.scoparium in one gallon containers here at Clearwater Color Nursery. We also have Leptospermum ‘Martinii’ and ‘Ruby Glow’ available as well. Be sure to check out our weekly availability for more information.