Manuka a Beautiful compact flowering tree that blooms in winter

Manuka: It is an attractive tree with very small leaves and flowers, thin branches, and is also useful for winter group planting. 

The Aussie plant to be introduced this time is Manuka (scientific name: Leptospermum scoparium ). Manuka, which blooms from December to early summer, is actually native to southeastern Australia and New Zealand. Even in same Australia, compared to plants native to the arid regions of Western Australia, it is moist, and in recent years it has become familiar in many countries as a plant that blooms in winter. 

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The leaves are 6 mm long and 2 mm wide, which are very small but evergreen, and the flowers are small, 1 to 2 cm in diameter, so they are easy to use for group planting and are suitable for garden trees in small houses.

In many countries when you think of Manuka, you think of double-flowered red flowers or pink or white flowers, and most of them are actually double-flowered. However, in Australia and New Zealand, where they originate, single white flowers are the mainstream.

 

If you search for “Manuka”, you will see a single flower that is almost white, and the scientific name is Leptos permum scoparium . If you search for “Manuka honey”, the flowers in the picture with honey are perfectly white single flowers. The honey version looks a little different from the double-flowered Manuka that you see.

Manuka is relatively strong against the cold and heat, but it is rather vulnerable to the heat and humidity, so a well-ventilated, well-drained, and sunny place is suitable.  The climate of southeastern Australia and New Zealand is dry in the summer and dry in the air, and even if the temperature rises in the daytime, it cools and in the middle of the night, and there is no hot and humid summer. After all, when growing plants, try to make the climate of the place of origin as close as possible.

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If pruning is done from May to June after flowering, it will be in a beautiful shape and flower bud differentiation will be in September, so you can enjoy the flowers the following year as well. Since the branches grow finely, it is easy to arrange the tree shape, but it is easy to be dense, so it is good to remove the branches in consideration of ventilation during the hot and humid season.

Since it can be increased with cuttings, the pruned branches cut by pruning after flowering in May to June are cut to about 15 cm to make cuttings, and then inserted into Kanuma soil, and managed in a well-ventilated and bright shade. If you do not run out of water, the roots will take root in a few weeks, so if you pot them up by the equinoctial week in September and root them firmly before it gets cold, you will be able to produce seedlings that can withstand a little cold.

Manuka is also popular for group planting these days and is also suitable for winter group planting. It goes well with pansies, leaf buttons, alyssum, etc., and it is attractive that it keeps blooming for a long time.

Bonsai is also popular locally, and I have seen Manuka bonsai at an exhibition of the Bonsai Association. It’s not a plum bonsai, but a bonsai of Hiyanagi plum, which is wonderful.

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