Escallonia

FAMILY: Escalloniaceae

TYPE
  • Evergreen
  • Shrubs
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Partial Shade
WATER
  • Regular Water
PLANTING ZONES
  • LS (Lower South) / Zone 8
  • CS (Coastal South) / Zone 9
  • TS (Tropical South) / Zone 10
  • TS (Tropical South) / Zone 11

Plant Details

Native to South America, principally Chile. These fast- growing plants look good year-round in a border or as a screen. They have handsome, glossy leaves; foliage of some exudes a resinous fragrance. Clusters of small (to 1 in.) flowers appear in summer and fall (nearly year-round in mild climates). Plants may freeze badly at 10 15F but will recover quickly. They stand up to coastal conditions and high winds and grow in most soils, except those that are highly alkaline. Prune taller types by removing one-third of old wood each year after bloom, cutting to the base; or shape into multi- trunked trees. Tip-pinch smaller kinds to keep them compact. They can be sheared as formal hedges, but this may sacrifice some bloom. Not browsed by deer.

E. x exoniensis. This cross between E. rubra and another Chilean species is a strong, erect grower to 1220 ft. tall and nearly as wide. Leaves are deep green above, lighter beneath. Loose clusters of white or pale pink flowers appear at the branch tips. 'Frades' is more compact, with a prolific show of pure pink-to-rose flowers.

E. rubra. Upright, variable, compact shrub grows to 615 ft. tall and wide. Leaves are smooth, very glossy dark green. Flowers are red or crimson, in 1- to 3-in. clusters. Much used as a screen or hedge, especially near the coast. 'Crimson Spire' is an upright grower with large, bright crimson flowers. E. r. macrantha is similar, but with rose-red flowers and a more sprawling shape.

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