Fortune's Sweet Olive foliage
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 15 feet
Spread: 15 feet
Hardiness Zone: 6
Other Names: Tea Olive, False Holly, Olive Holly
A somewhat rare shrub with incredibly spiny, lustrous leaves that are holly-like, but it's actually related to lilac and privet; a more upright shrub, covered with fragrant, white trumpet flowers; more adaptable than holly
Fortune's Sweet Olive is covered in stunning fragrant white tubular flowers along the branches in early fall. Its attractive small spiny oval leaves remain dark green in color throughout the year. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Fortune's Sweet Olive is a dense multi-stemmed evergreen perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and is best cut back to the ground in late winter before active growth resumes. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;
Fortune's Sweet Olive is recommended for the following landscape applications;
Planting & Growing
Fortune's Sweet Olive will grow to be about 15 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 15 feet. Its foliage tends to remain dense right to the ground, not requiring facer plants in front. Although it is technically a woody plant, this slow-growing plant can be expected to behave as a perennial in our climate if planted outdoors over the winter, usually regrowing from its base (crown) the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This particular variety is an interspecific hybrid.
This plant is not reliably hardy in our region, and certain restrictions may apply; contact the store for more information.