osmanthus -- slow growing?

klew(Z7b/8, NE PDX, OR)March 27, 2009

I am planning a 50'-long informal hedge to screen my house and yard from the street. I want to include a couple of osmanthus. All osmanthus are listed as "slow growing." How slow is slow-growing?

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Depends on the exact species and cultivar of course. I have a variegated type of Osmanthus heterophyllus 'Goshiki'. It only grows about 3-5" a year. I have a feeling most Osmanthus delavayi types will grow faster than that.

One thing to consider is that slow-growing is a GOOD thing for a hedge if you can just be a bit patient in the early years. You will probably end up with something much easier to maintain. A fast-growing hedge is likely one that will get larger than you like and/or require a lot more pruning.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2009 at 6:34PM
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klew(Z7b/8, NE PDX, OR)

Of course species/cultivar are important, and I should have mentioned that I'm particularly interested in info on Osmanthus fortunei 'San Jose', O. dalavayi, O. burkwoodiiand O. heterophyllus ÂRotundifolius'.

Your observation as to positive qualities of "slow-growing" is right on...I just want to know how slow slow is for these guys so I can plan accordingly.


    Bookmark   March 28, 2009 at 3:55PM
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George Three LLC

expensive too! don't forget the expensive part!

i just got a really nice o. burkwoodii which is fixin' to bloom any second. tree form. if it grew an inch or two last year i didn't see it happen. of course, i didn't measure it and first years can be hard for any plant.

i have a feeling an osmanthus hedge is something you want someone else- 50 years ago- to plant on your property. you'll need a delorean and a flux capacitor.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 2:45PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

When stimulated by irrigation Burkwood osmanthus grows 18" or more per year. Delavay's osmanthus normally produces rather long growths. Slower growing hollyleaf osmanthus is the most hardy, at least among those with a regular garden center presence.

After the damaging 1990 winter hollyleaf osmanthus was noticeable for being one of a really rather small number of repeatedly seen broad-leaved evergreens (not counting, of course the legions of rhododendron hybrids hardier to much lower temperatures than we have here) in local plantings that wasn't scorched or otherwise visibly affected at all.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 1:36AM
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