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Pittosporum tenuifolium ‘Golf Ball’

Pittosporum tenuifolium is native to New Zealand but has long been in cultivation in Britain where it grows extremely well.

Naturally forms a dense mound of small sea green leaves. Has small dark purple sweetly fragranced flowers in late spring to early summer. Forms a 4ft blob in 5 years. Trim after flowering to maintain shape and density. It’s immensely variable and there are many different varieties (we do several) and this relatively new form was discovered by a grower in West Sussex who happens to be a keen golfer. Does it look like a golf ball? Slightly.

The important difference with this form is the neat round compact way it grows. It needs plenty of light and any reasonably well drained soil but it’s tough, reliable and pretty hardy too.

Evergreen, insignificant little blackish flowers 3ft x 3ft after 5 years. Position in any reasonably well drained soil in sun or partial shade. Good on coast and as an alternative to box.

Propagated by 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.