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Myrtus communis AGM

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© RHS 1998

Characteristics

Plant type

Shrub or Conservatory/Greenhouse

Habit

Bushy

Fragrance

Leaf or Flower

Resilience

Hardiness

H4 (hardy - average winter)

Colour

Flower

White in Autumn and Summer

Foliage

Dark Green in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter

Fruit

Black and Purple in Autumn

Size

Ultimate height

1.5-2.5 metres

Ultimate spread

1.5-2.5 metres

Time to ultimate height

10-20 years


Preferred common name

common myrtle

Family

Myrtaceae


Myrtus are evergreen shrubs or small trees with aromatic, leathery leaves and solitary, bowl-shaped white flowers followed by fleshy, often edible berries

M. communis is a bushy medium-sized evergreen shrub with small, aromatic, ovate leaves and profuse white flowers 2cm in width, followed by purplish-black berries

Other common names

  • myrtle

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun

Aspect

  • South-facing or West-facing
  • Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow outdoors in moist but well-drained soil, shelter from cold dry winds. Under glass grow in a loam-based compost in filtered light with good ventilation. Requires a long hot summer to produce flowers and fruits

Soil

  • Moist but well-drained
  • Acid, Alkaline or Neutral
  • Chalk, Clay, Sand or Loam

Propagation

Propagate by seed or semi-hardwood cuttings

Suggested planting locations and garden types

City/Courtyard Gardens, Coastal, Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower borders and beds, Hedging/Screens, Low Maintenance, Mediterranean Climate Plants or Wall-side Borders


How to care

Pruning

Pruning group 9

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

Generally disease free