Native to South America, principally Chile. These fast-growing plants look good year-round in a border or as a screen. They have handsome, glossy leaves; foliage of some exudes a resinous fragrance. Clusters of small (to 1-in.) flowers appear in summer and fall (nearly year-round in mild climates). Plants may freeze badly at 10°F to 15°F (–12°C to –9°C) but will recover quickly. They stand up to coastal conditions and high winds, and grow in most soils, except those that are highly alkaline. Prune taller types by removing one-third of old wood each year after bloom, cutting to the base; or shape into multitrunked trees. Tip-pinch smaller kinds to keep them compact. They can be sheared as formal hedges, but this may sacrifice some bloom.
Upright, variable, compact shrub grows to 6–15 ft. tall and wide. Leaves are smooth, very glossy dark green. Red or crimson flowers in 1–3-in. clusters. Much used as a screen or hedge, especially near the coast.Escallonia x exoniensis
This cross between E. rubra and another Chilean species is a strong, erect grower to 12–20 ft. tall and nearly as wide. Leaves are deep green above, lighter beneath. Loose clusters of white or pale pink flowers appear at the branch tips. ‘Frades’ is more compact, with a prolific show of pure pink to rose flowers.Escallonia x langleyensis
This hybrid of Escallonia rubra and Escallonia virgata grows to 5 ft. tall and wide, tends to sprawl. Pink buds give rise to white flowers.
‘Mandalay Queen’ has very large semidouble pink flowers with fluted petals.
Native to New Zealand. Grows to 2–3 in. high and up to 12 in. wide. Dark green, 1/2-in. leaves s...
From China, Japan. Big-leafed, water-loving plant forms a clump about 2 ft. high and wide. Glossy brig...