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Leptospermum scoparium

tea tree

A rounded, evergreen shrub to 2.5m, larger and sometimes tree-like in its native New Zealand. The small, aromatic, dark green leaves are the source of an essential oil used medicinally for centuries by the Māori people. In late spring and early summer it bears a profusion of shallowly cup-shaped white flowers; bees that feed on these flowers produce the famous manuka honey

Other common names
broom tea tree
Captain Cook's tea tree
see morekahikatoa
manuka
New Zealand tea tree
Synonyms
Leptospermum scoparium var. eximium
Leptospermum eximium
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Size
Ultimate height
1.5–2.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
1.5–2.5 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Sand
Clay
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring White Green
Summer White Green
Autumn Green
Winter Green
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Drought resistance
Yes
Hardiness
H4
Botanical details
Family
Myrtaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Leptospermum are aromatic evergreen shrubs or small trees with small, often silky leaves and 5-petalled flowers in late spring and summer

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Australia, New Zealand

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How to grow

Cultivation

Outdoors, grow in well-drained, acidic to neutral soil in a sheltered position in full sun. Protect from very cold weather when young

Propagation

Propagate by seed, or root semi-ripe cuttings with bottom heat in summer

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Coastal
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Hedging and screens
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

See pruning group 8

Pests

Generally pest-free

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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