Eucalyptus crenulata – Victorian Silver Gum – 1 of 4 great for part shade
Silvery sage-green, aromatic foliage on a moderately sized tree, super flowers for bees, hedge-screen and cut foliage.
Botanical Name: Eucalyptus crenulata MYRTACEÆ; Myrtle Family
Common Name: Buxton Gum, Victorian Silver Gum Status: Evergreen Tree
Origin: A species of Eucalyptus which is endemic to the Acheron River valley in Victoria in Australia, grows in the soggy valley bottoms!
Why we like this species:
- A useful small/medium tree to grow in a medium garden and to brighten dark corners as a bush.
- Responds well to pruning and can be used as a hedge/screen.
- Grows quickly enough to give a result, but doesn’t become a monster
- Excellent cut foliage
- Happy in intermittently wet soil conditions
Along with E. neglecta, this variety is very tolerant of growing in part shade.
An interesting medium Eucalyptus tree of good bushy form with a silvery hue and aromatic leaves. Best grown in the warmer counties of the UK, it offers many opportunities as a lovely specimen tree, hedge-screen, stand-alone shrub, cut foliage and use with chickens.
Lignotuber: It has one, which is a good thing! E. crenulata will regenerate off the lignotuber if cut down by man, beast or nature. It also produces many shoots from epicormic buds lying dormant beneath the bark higher up the tree; so E. crenulata will respond extremely well to both coppicing and pollarding practices.
Shoots ‘n Leaves: Very ornamental foliage. Young shoots are often a silvery rose colour with a white bloom and ‘bobbly’ stems. Juvenile leaves are silvery, becoming a mid-apple green with white frosting; reminiscent of small Silver Poplar leaves (almost palmate) and they persist on mature trees. Leaves have a crinkly/wavy margin – hence the name ‘crenulata’. Glaucous buds, twigs and underside of the leaves give the whole plant a silvery appearance.
Bark: Smooth, furrowed, silvery coffee colour, sometimes with a golden hue.
Flowers: These are white and fluffy with a beautiful sweet perfume when inhaled up close. Held in groups of 7 to 11, they are not visible on the tree from a distance.
Leaf Aroma: Strong resin aroma and the leaves are sticky when crushed.
Rate of Growth: Medium 1.0-1.5m (3-4ft) per year.
Height in maturity, if left unpruned: A medium sized tree of moderately fast growth growing up to about 10-12m tall (30 ft-ish) and if maintained as a coppiced/pollarded specimen will take on the size and shape of a species rose or coppiced Hazel tree
Hardiness: Tolerating down to around -8 to 10 °C to -14 °C mark, once mature. Hardiness in Eucalyptus is governed by provenance of seed, how it is grown (i.e. high nitrogen levels reduces cold tolerance), age of the tree – the older your tree, the hardier it will be. Younger Eucs are more susceptible to frost damage. Hardiness refers to the lignotuber and not the foliage.