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Cistus ladanifer var. ‘Paladin’ (Rock Rose)

The resin exuded by the leaves on this plant gives the most wonderful aromatic smell – so evocative of warmer climes. The degree to which you can smell them varies according to different weather conditions. Mostly, it seems, when the sun shines – whether it’s summer or winter. They enjoy light and sunny places with good drainage and don’t mind good ventilation (very windy) even on the coast. Their common name of Rock Rose tells quite a bit. They grow in rocky places and their flowers are a bit rose like. White (mostly) and prolific in midsummer. This plant can grow quite upright (to 4ft x 4ft) compared with most of the dome shaped Cistus. This is by far the most aromatic.

Masses planted at the new nursery at Pulborough in what’s become known as the Jesus of Nazareth Garden. They smell delicious.

Propagated by us from cuttings.

N.B. When clipping several plants with the same tool, have a bucket containing a 5% bleach solution and swish your blades around for 30 seconds between plants to sterilise them. This will help avoid the chance of cross contamination of disease.


As with all woody plants, plant high, exposing as much of the taper at the base of the trunk as possible. Allowing soil to accumulate round the base of a tree can be fatal. Keep very well watered when first planted.

Hardiness traffic light amber

Hardiness level Amber

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Hardy in the Home Counties if sensibly sited (avoiding severe frost pockets, for example). Many Amber Labelled Plants are from cuttings from well-established plants that have survived many harsh winters in the South-East.

This is only meant as a guide. Please remember we're always on hand to give advice about plants and their frost hardiness.

Please remember that these coloured labels are only a rough guide.

General Point about Plant Hardiness: The commonly held belief that it's better to 'plant small' is perfectly true with herbaceous plants, but not necessarily true with woody plants. They need some 'wood' on them to survive severe cold - so plants of marginal hardiness in very cold areas should really be planted LARGER, rather than smaller, wherever possible.