The Q&A Archives: Planting & Growth

Question: I was given a 5 gal. pittosporium (tenuforium) - it was referred to as silver sheen. I don't know if there are special planting hints nor do I know it's growth pattern, how close can I plant it to other bushes, its water & feeding needs, etc. Any and all help .... referral to a website, etc. I would appreciate all the help.

Answer: Silver Sheen Pittosporium is an evergreen upright shrub that can grow upwards to 12-15 feet tall (some list it to 20 ft) and 6-8' wide with small oval silver-green leaves held on thin black branches. This cultivar has notably more open habit and smaller leaves than the species. Plant in sun or part shade, with occasional watering. Seaside tolerant. The small leaves start uniformly round and elongate with age. A very showy and dramatic looking plant when the silver highlights in the leaves catch morning and afternoon light. This is further enhanced if a gentle breeze cause the branches to move, making the plant shimmer. Very fast growing. Can be maintained as a very nice looking formal hedge to 3 to 6 feet tall if tip-pruned regularly.

The plant originated in New Zealand, it has purple colored flowers in the spring, and is winter hardy to 15-20F.

It grows in any soil as long as it is well-drained and won't need to be fertilized unless the color is pale or growth is poor. You can plant it within 6' of other shrubs if don't plan on pruning; closer if you intend to keep it pruned into a smaller size.

Hope this answers all your questions!

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