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The Huon pine from Tasmania is a member of the Podocarpus family and makes a large shrub, or small tree after very many years. Slender branches of scale-like evergreen foliage droops in a very graceful fashion, though the plant remains conical. Not for the very coldest areas, this appreciates a little shelter in most places, though is tougher than you may imagine.
Masses of vibrant, deep coral-pink flowers are seen late summer and stems show attractive bark. A hybrid between L. indica and L. fauriei raised by Don Egolf at the US National Arboretum, this, despite popular belief, flowers regularly in the Southern UK at least. Plants at Kew have been covered in flower in late summer for many years, including recent poor summers.
One of the most distinctive evergreen trees one can see in west coast gardens, though is hardier than you might imagine, to below -10c.. Often confused with Laurelia sempervirens, both species native to Central and South Central Chile. A medium sized evergreen tree with pale grey bark, distinctive, toothed, aromatic foliage and small white flowers in spring.
Leptospermum 'County Park Blush' seedlings (new)
Raised from seed from a very attractive parent, these are a mildly variable batch. Flowering in early summer; usually white flushed with pink, these will make upright evergreen shrubs with tiny grey-green leaves. Suitable for a wall in inland gardens, these are easy in the open in maritime areas. For a well drained neutral to acid soil in full sun.
Leptospermum myrtifolium 'Silver Sheen'
A lovely metallic looking, upright, medium sized evergreen shrub with lots of little narrow silver leaves on reddish stems. White flowers produced in July. Best in full sun in well drained neutral to acid soils, though doing well near here on lime. Hardier than many other species of Leptospermum.
Leptospermum scoparium 'Chapmanii'
A form of the common manuka or tea tree, found near Dunedin, NZ over 100yrs ago. The small leaves are brownish green and the flowers, borne en-masse in May and June, are bright rose (that being a vivid bright pink) with a dark eye. Requires the shelter of a wall, unless you live somewhere mild, and neutral to acid soil.
Lespedeza thunbergii 'Edo Shibori'
A very distinctive Japanese form with pink and white bi-coloured flowers. As is typical of this late flowering sub-shrub the arching stems are weighed down in September and October by the massed flower display. Semi woody annual stems clad with pale green trifoliolate leaves rise to at least 1m or more from a hardy rootstock. Cut back hard in spring.
An unusual evergreen species from SW China. Dense panicles of white flowers with violet anthers are borne in summer, followed by small black fruits, this makes a medium sized shrub with small dark green glossy leaves; a good substitute for box, but also a great background plant. Hardy, though not the best for very cold, exposed sites.
A most unusual evergreen species of 'spicebush' from SE Asia. Forming a large shrub in the wild with very attractively shaped, relatively small, rounded foliage with an elongated drip-tip. The veins are deeply impressed and the leaves emerge covered in silken golden hairs, turning green with silvery undersides. Very hardy in the USA.
A rare and relatively recently introduced species from China, closely related to, but hardier than L. formosana, with 3-lobed leaves and new growth bronze-purple throughout the growing season, turning rich red-purple in late autumn. Makes a medium sized tree for any reasonable soil.
Liquidambar orientalis (new)
Endangered in the wild state in SW Turkey, where it inhabits marshy ground in a few river valleys, this makes only a small tree here in the UK. The foliage is deeply 5-lobed (with extra lobes on those lobes) and turns to fine red and orange shades in autumn. Hardy and tolerant of moist sites as well as ordinary soil. Not happy on think chalk.
Liquidambar styraciflua 'Palo Alto'
To me this is the finest form of the American Sweet Gum, with its maple-like leaves turning an extremely bright, long lasting, scarlet and orange in autumn. Will make a medium sized tree eventually. Very hardy and tolerant but not for shallow chalk soils. Autumn colour is better if sited in full sun.
The rare Chinese Tulip Tree, differing from its big American cousin in its smaller stature and more ornamental, narrower waisted leaves more glaucous beneath and purplish on expansion. Similar tulip like flowers. Any ordinary soil. Wonderfully strong growing.
A large evergreen shrub or small erect tree with magnificent, much divided, fern-like foliage and rusty coloured velvety stems. Short racemes of buff and scarlet flowers in July. Though growable in sheltered spots in the south (a big plant grows at Wakehurst Place, Sussex), it is ideally a plant for western seaboard gardens where it is hard to equal for foliage.
Lonicera caerulea var. kamtschatica 'Larisa' (new)
The Haskap is a superb alternative to blueberries, especially for those without acid soils. Forming an extremely hardy deciduous shrub 1.5m x 1.5m, with sea-green foliage and yellowish-white flowers followed by elongated blue tinged fruit in June/July. 'Larisa' is a clone selected for abundant fruit production and flavour.
Lonicera caerulea var. kamtschatica 'Maries' (new)
The Haskap is a superb alternative to blueberries, especially for those without acid soils. Forming an extremely hardy deciduous shrub 1.2m x 1.2m, with sea-green foliage and yellowish-white flowers followed by elongated blue tinged fruit in June/July. 'Maries' is a clone selected for abundant fruit production, sweet flavour and more compact growth form.
Introduced from China by Roy Lancaster in 1983 this has made a medium to large winter flowering hardy shrub. Blue-green foliage is very heavily flushed purple in summer and the slender tubed, trumpet shaped, pale primrose yellow flowers are pink tinged and hang in clusters from the bare stems in late winter, giving off a subtle but lovely scent. An excellent intro.
Luma apiculata (syn. Myrtus luma) Hardy form (new)
One of the very finest large shrubs/small trees for bark, it being a gorgeous smooth, cinnamon-orange, peeling in patches to reveal the white inner bark. Clouds of white myrtle flowers in late summer followed by edible black fruit. These are from plants known to have taken extreme cold in Dec 2010, so are worth trying anywhere with reasonable shelter.
Luma chequen (new)
A small evergreen densely leafy tree with small aromatic, undulate, bright green foliage and a mass of scented creamy-white flowers in summer and autumn followed by black berries. One of the hardiest of all Chilean myrtles, even through Nov-Dec 2010 in rural Berkshire. Leaves can be used sparingly in soups etc and fruit make a fine preserve.
Lyonothamnus floribundus subsp. aspleniifolius
'Catalina Ironwood'. A highly desirable, fast growing, slender, small evergreen tree with very attractive fern like foliage and handsome red-brown and dark-grey shredding bark, kinda like a mini redwood trunk. Big plates of white flowers in early summer. For a sunny, sheltered site. Very surprisingly totally hardy here, even in extreme winters like Jan or Dec 2010.
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