Eucalyptus parvula

Eucalyptus parvula


Extremely hardy down to -14 to -18 °C, one of the very hardiest of the Eucalypts.  A fantastic, adaptable species, with many uses. It has neat little leaves and has a more compact habit than most of the other species. Grows into a small elegant tree of semi-weeping habit, ultimately with a broad spreading crown.  Call us on 0751 526 1511 for help in choosing your Eucalyptus.  


Why we like this variety:-

  • Excellent small to medium sized evergreen tree
  • Beautiful leaves and bark
  • Slow growing for a Eucalyptus, prunable, neat habit
  • Tolerates very difficult, poor soil conditions
  • Extremely hardy



Botanical Name: Eucalyptus parvula (formerly parvifolia)   MYRTACEÆ; Myrtle Family

Common Name: Small-leaved Gum, Kybean Gum 

Status: Evergreen Tree                      

Origin: New South Wales, Victoria  The botanists recently renamed this species E. parvula, because E. parvifolia was used to describe a Eucalyptus fossil record in 1895 and therefore cannot be used to name the modern living species.

I love this note from Euclid about the Australian distribution of E. parvula:"A small tree of restricted but scattered distribution on the Southern Tablelands of New South Wales east of Cooma, from near Badja south to Dragon Swamp near Cathcart, preferring damp cold sites on grassy plains."

How can you resist a tree that hails from a place called Dragon Swamp?


  • Nursery Notes 2020: Summer

    Our 'parvies' have made fabulous growth during last year in all sizes.

    Good stocks of 3 litre young 2nd year trees available now in a range of sizes from 60cm up to 180cm

    Sturdy 5 litre plants ready ranging in size from 160cm up to 210cm

    12 litre multistems - Great for growing into small to medium screening trees, also for cut foliage bushes - looking fabulous now 

    12 litre standard stock ready now with heads beginning to form

    20 litre and 30 litre specimens ready again in 2021

    45 litre and 100 litre multistemmed trees are cracking mature stock for instant effect

    1 litre starter trees are available as part of the cut foliage collection

    Description, habit,  uses and attributes:  A very versatile, adaptable Eucalyptus with many attributes.  E. parvula deserves to be more frequently planted, many gardeners don't realise how good a species it is.

    Small tree: ideal for the smaller garden, which cannot accommodate a large Eucalyptus. An interesting variety, it has neat little leaves and a more compact habit than most of the other species; once described in our nursery as being like an alpine Hebe on steroids!  Short term (first year), it forms a tall shrub.  The following year, it grows into a small elegant tree of semi-weeping habit, ultimately with a broad spreading crown, where it retains some of its juvenile foliage (unusual for Eucalypts).  

    Cut foliage for floral art: Fabulous, prolific cut foliage.  E. parvula forms a lignotuber and it responds well to coppicing; both juvenile and adult foliage are cut for foliage and used for flower arranging.  Produces long useful stems in a blue-sage green hue.  Often to be found 


    Windbreak: plant in groups to create shelter from biting winds


    Privacy Screen: It responds well to pruning and forms a good hedge/screen (2-3 m tall). The recommended planting distance between each plant is about 1.8-2.0 m, for a hedge screen.


    Patio Plant: Being slow growing, E. parvula lends itself to being grown as a multi-stemmed specimen in a container for your terrace or courtyard garden: use a large air-pot to keep its roots happy. See our guidance notes on 'Growing in Containers'


    Domestic firewood production:  if coppiced every 5-8 years, E. parvula will produce a log about 5 inches (125mm) in diameter - just right for your log burner.  It is more a small domestic species and is not on the commercial production list for firewood.


    Shoots 'n Leaves: Young stems/shoots are often a maroon colour

    Juvenile leaves can vary in shape and are usually quite small, blue green in colour, sometimes edged in maroon.

    Adult leaves: smaller than most Eucalyptus and pointed, but quite variable and not usually longer than 75 mm.


    Bark: lovely, tactile, smooth bark in a golden biscuit to coffee colour with some violet-grey and foxy-russet, shredding in the upper tree branches


    Flowers: Flowers white in groups of 7.


    Leaf Aroma: fresh Eucalyptus


    Rate of Growth: relatively slow growing at around 1 m per year


    Height in maturity, if left unpruned:  eventually around 10 m, but can be pruned to keep it a good deal shorter or coppiced/pollarded every 5-8 years and grown as a multi-stemmed specimen. 


    Hardiness: Extremely hardy down to -16 to -18°C.  Eucalyptus parvula, along with E. gunnii,is one of the very hardiest of the Eucalypts, even though neither are snow gums.  Please note that young trees are more susceptible to frost damage at low temperatures; hardiness improves with age and refers to the lignotuber, not the foliage

    Planting Position and Soil Preference: a very adaptable species, tolerating a reasonable degree of exposure.  Thrives on a wide range of soils types.  E. parvula will grow in intermittently boggy, poor infertile, soils and  is also tolerant of alkaline (limey) ground.  It grows very well for us on our cold, swampy, alkaline clay.  It withstands quite high temperatures if kept well watered, but we're not sure this last point is relevant to the climate of the UK!


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Grafton Nursery,


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07307 413 052

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