70920After many centuries of cultivation, myrtle, Myrtus communis, has not changed much. It was one of the more traditional plants for formally shorn hedges in Victorian gardens. It functions somewhat like a drought tolerant boxwood. Unshorn plants can grow as gnarly small trees not much higher than the eaves. ‘Compacta’ gets only about three or four feet high and wide, even without pruning.

The finely textured evergreen foliage is very aromatic and darker green than boxwood foliage. Individual leaves are not much more than an inch long. Not many of the tiny white flowers that bloom in summer develop if plants are shorn regularly. Unshorn plants that are allowed to bloom can produce small bluish black berries which might be messy on pavement. Foliar density is best in full sun. Shade can cause bald spots. Established plants may not need watering, and might live longer than anything else in the landscape.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s