Thursday, July 7, 2016

Plant Profile: Euonymus


Latin name: Euonymus (pronounced "yew-ONNY-muss)
Common name: Japanese Spindle Tree, Euonymus
Originally from: Japan, Korea and China
Blooms: The flowers aren't the point here - they're usually yellow and insignificant.
Light: Full sun!
Water: Drought tolerant
Drainage: Excellent
Height x width: 3-6'x3'6'
USDA Zones: 6-9
Where to find in P. Garden: In the left bed we have Euonymus japonicus "Microphylla Variegata" (Variegated Boxleaf Euonymus), Euonymus japonicus "Aureomarginatus" and Euonymus japonicus "Chollipo Gold"

Well here's a Home Depot wonder. Your basic shubbery, variegated so a bit trashy looking, and basically ours did, as they say in Ireland, "feck all" for a long time, so long in fact that I started to wonder if they were made of plastic. Actually I started calling them "... that plastic plant... what's it called? That thing over there..."

I came to feel that while I had initially been attracted to it's gaudy leaves like a magpie to a silver penny,  this was probably a sign that the plant was a bit of a tart. And lo, I am not alone in thinking that - Southern Living roundly despises this plant.

That said, they survived The Drought and also benign neglect like being planted in the left bed (zero water) or under something dense and shady, and basically being ignored for years.

And what happened? They carried on. I wouldn't say the one in shade throve per se, but it's alive for some reason despite no sun and no water. And the other one in full sun actually looks pretty smug. So I should probably be nicer to them!

With that in mind they deserve a Plant Profile so here it is.

They're compact, dense, evergreen, make a nice hedge, and come in colors that aren't plain green. I would say they are less tough than your average Coprosma, which is a similar plant format, especially the little boxleaf one that wants more water, but that's being picky. See if you can design a garden with one in it that doesn't make people sneer!

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