Olearia – Popular Shrubs for the Garden
The olearias are the Daisy Bushes, natives of Australia and New Zealand, evergreen shrubs, many of them tender, though suitable for coastal gardens in the milder counties. Though not fully hardy, Olearia haastii is hardy enough to be grown successfully in quite cold northern gardens, where one can see old specimens, 4-5 feet tall, bearing numerous clusters of small white daisyin late summer.
It makes an unusual and informal evergreen hedge. In warmer gardens near the coast, even in the south-east, provided it is planted there in a sheltered place, the hybrid Olearia X scilloniensis will put up a good show. Its flowers are much larger and a well-grown bush, 3-5 feet tall, is a hand-some sight when it flowers in May and early June. Even when out of flower it is attractive for its leaves are a good grey-green.
In somewhat milder but exposed seaside areas, it is possible to grow Olearia gunniana, the Tasmanian Daisy Bush, which again flowers in May and June, white in the species, but also available with flowers that are rosy-pink, blue or lavender in colour.
These Daisy Bushes will grow in any normal gardenand do not object to slight shade. A trim with shears after they have flowered will improve their appearance. If they become leggy and gaunt they may be pruned quite hard.
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