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Myrsine africana (African boxwood)

Beginner
skill rating
1 hour care
per year
1.2m
Max height
0.8m
Max spread
10-20 years
To maturity

Plant details

Botanical name

Myrsine africana

Other names

African boxwood, Cape myrtle

Genus

Myrsine Myrsine

Species

M. africana - M. africana is a slow-growing, upright, dense, evergreen shrub with rounded to ovate, aromatic, glossy, finely toothed, dark green leaves and, in late spring, umbels of inconspicuous, cream flowers, male flowers with red anthers. On female plants, flowers are followed by spherical, pink fruit ripening dark purple.


Myrsine africana is: Evergreen

Fragrance

Flowers are fragrant.

Habit

Dense, Upright

Flower

Cream, Red in Spring

Foliage

Dark-green in All seasons

How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest-free.

General care

Pruning

Pruning group 1 or 8.

Propagation methods

Semi-ripe cuttings, Seed


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Where to grow

Myrsine africana (African boxwood) will reach a height of 1.2m and a spread of 0.8m after 10-20 years.

Suggested uses

Woodland, Wallside and trellises, Rock, Ground Cover, Greenhouse, Drought Tolerant, Beds and borders

Cultivation

Grow in humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in a sheltered position in full sun or light, dappled shade. Tolerates short periods of frost. In colder areas, grow under glass or overwinter indoors. Tolerates alkaline soil but will fail to thrive in shallow, dry, chalky soil.

Soil type

Clay, Loamy, Sandy

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Full Sun

Aspect

North, South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Tender in frost (H3)

Companion plants

Botanical name

Myrsine africana

Other names

African boxwood, Cape myrtle

Genus

Myrsine Myrsine

Species

M. africana - M. africana is a slow-growing, upright, dense, evergreen shrub with rounded to ovate, aromatic, glossy, finely toothed, dark green leaves and, in late spring, umbels of inconspicuous, cream flowers, male flowers with red anthers. On female plants, flowers are followed by spherical, pink fruit ripening dark purple.

Native to

Azores, China, Eastern Africa, Himalayas, Southern Africa

Foliage

Evergreen

Fragrance

Flowers are fragrant.

Habit

Dense, Upright


Colour

Flower

Cream, Red in Spring

Foliage

Dark-green in All seasons


How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest-free.

General care

Pruning

Pruning group 1 or 8.

Propagation methods

Semi-ripe cuttings, Seed


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Myrsine africana (African boxwood) will reach a height of 1.2m and a spread of 0.8m after 10-20 years.

Suggested uses

Woodland, Wallside and trellises, Rock, Ground Cover, Greenhouse, Drought Tolerant, Beds and borders

Cultivation

Grow in humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in a sheltered position in full sun or light, dappled shade. Tolerates short periods of frost. In colder areas, grow under glass or overwinter indoors. Tolerates alkaline soil but will fail to thrive in shallow, dry, chalky soil.

Soil type

Clay, Loamy, Sandy

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Full Sun

Aspect

North, South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Tender in frost (H3)

USDA zones

Zone 11, Zone 10, Zone 9

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Clay, Loamy, Sandy Tell us...
Soil drainage: Moist but well-drained Tell us...
Soil pH: Acid, Alkaline, Neutral Tell us...
Light: Full Sun Tell us...
Aspect: North, South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Exposed, Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Tender in frost (H3) Tell us...

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