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Eucalyptus ficifolia, photo courtesy of Steffen Hauser/botanikfoto/Alamy
Eucalyptus ficifolia, photo courtesy of Steffen Hauser/botanikfoto/Alamy

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Zone
Zones 5, 6, 8-24, H1, H2
Full Sun
Full
Minimal Water
Minimal

Eucalyptus ficifolia

Red-flowering Gum
Myrtaceae
Evergreen, Trees

EUCALYPTUS

With few exceptions, these plants are native to Australia. More than 600 different species grow there, ranging from sprawling shrubs (many of them bearing the common name “mallee”) to skyline trees. About 150 species have been grown in areas of California and Arizona that have climates similar to the plants’ native Australian habitats; many more have been grown as solitary representatives in arboretums. Eucalypts are the most widely planted non-native trees in these two Western states—for several hundred miles in parts of California.

Eucalyptus ficifolia

Hardy to 25°F to 30°F (–4°C to–1°C). Grows to 18–45 ft. tall,15–60 ft. wide; usually single-trunked and round headed. Deep green, leathery, 3–7-in.-long leaves. Showy foot-long clusters of red flowers (sometimes white, cream, pink, or orange) all year, peaking in summer. Heavy 1-in. seed capsules resemble dice cups; prune these from young trees to avoid weighing down the branches and spoiling the form. Seldom thrives in lawns or hottest climates.

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