The wonderful Tea Tree is part of a genus made up of about 80 species of evergreen shrubs or small trees with small narrow, needle-like leaves, some of which are aromatic when crushed, a bit lemony. Native of Australia, it has a relative that is native to NZ which is naturally widespread in certain areas.
When Captain Cook’s crew and the early settlers were suffering from scurvy as well as withdrawal from their regular English tea, they would use the leaves of a variety of the Leptospermum to make a brew.
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The flowers range in colour from white through pink and red shades, and there are singles and doubles that bloom prolifically. They are used in many different ways in landscaping; groups of trees provide graceful hedging, single specimens provide a splash of colour, they can be pruned to shapes such as standards, and they make an excellent addition to the vase. The nectar from the flowers is harvested by bees and makes a yummy and highly beneficial honey.
The requirements for cultivation of the species are that they are best suited to well-drained soil in full sun, but some will tolerate wet and shady conditions. In order to retain their bushy habit, light pruning from a young age and each year after flowering is recommended. Most species are hardy to drought.
Leptospermum scoparium, commonly known as Manuka is a bushy shrub seldom more than 3.5 – 4m high, but Leptospermum ericoides, knownasKanuka grows into a small tree up to 12m or more. Both species are, however, extremely variable. They flower in profusion and Manuka has showy, white flowers about 10cm across but Kanuka has much smaller flowers. The fruits are woody capsules containing numerous small, linear seeds. Manuka sheds its bark in long papery strips and the wood is the best known firewood in New Zealand so you can always put your prunings into the fire which will keep you warm and hapy and gay on those cold winter nights!
With its medium to large bright pink flowers on long stems in mid Spring, Andromeda makes a stunning display as a specimen or in a bulk landscape. Will definitley bring the bees into you garden. Erect growth habit.
Prune after flowering to ensure good flowering for the following season.
Colour: Pink Habit: Upright Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 2m x 0m
Native. One of the best varieties for pot growing. Large, soft double pink flowering manuka. The bushy growth makes it perfect for a spectacular hedge, or just as at home as a specimen in the garden. Prune lightly after flowers for best shape.
Colour: Pink Habit: Bushy Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 1.5m x 2m
Native. Manuka AKA Tea Tree. Exquisite double flowers that start appearing in late winter and continue through to the spring. The flowers are in tones of burgundy-red and are complemented by the dainty deep bronze aromatic foliage. Happy in the sun. Evergreen.
Colour: Red / Red Habit: Upright Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 2m x 1.5m
The Australian Silky Tea Tree is a graceful, open, evergreen tree with stunning red bronze foliage. In summer masses of single white flowers with green centres smother the branches and make the bees happy. Quite tolerant but happiest in the sun with good drainage.
'Coppersheen' looks good as a single specimen and the foliage colour combines well with other garden colours. Equally it looks great as a closely planted screen or hedge and for this purpose it trims very well.
Colour: White / Green Habit: Upright Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 2.5m x 2m
Native. A compact bushy evergreen shrub with narrow pointed leaves of reddish bronze. In spring double crimson red flowers appear en masse. Plant in a sunny spot in well drained soil. Quite tolerant and reasonably hardy to light frost. Evergreen.
Colour: Red Habit: Compact Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 100cm x 100cm
Outstanding shrub for all seasons, magnificent when in full bloom. Rich pink to red flowers are single in form and appear abundantly from late winter through spring. A fine choice for individual or mass planting. Try also in containers for patio decor. Evergreen
Colour: Pink / Dark Pink Habit: Bushy Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 2m x 1.5m
Aust. Native. Merinda has vibrant magenta flowers that cover the bush in colour. Flowers occur in late spring. Early growth of this plant is spreading or cascading but will develop into a small shrub. Frost tolerant.
Colour: Red Habit: Cascading Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 100cm x 100cm
Native. Delightful dwarf 'Manuka' which has a profusion of single light red flowers from late spring through to summer. Foliage is tiny, pointed and a bronze green tone. Easy to grow in just about any soil but likes a sunny spot. Evergreen.
Colour: Red Habit: Compact Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 30cm x 45cm
Native. A lovely little tree that will delight with masses of double white flowers in winter and spring. The flowers have a maroon centre and will be much loved by bees. Aromatic dark green foliage with bronze tones. Plant in the sun, tolerant, hardy and evergreen. Suitable for coastal gardens.
Colour: White / Red Habit: Upright Est. Hgt/Wdth in 7/10 yrs: 2m x 2m