Leptospermum scoparium [lep-toh-SPER-mum, sko-PAIR-ee-um] is a flowering evergreen shrub belonging to the Myrtaceae household.
It’s native to New Zealand and Australia, the place it’s popularly grown outdoor for its distinctive, delicate flowers.
Typically cultivated for mānuka honey due to its antibacterial properties, produced when honeybees collect the nectar from its flowers.
Within the late 1700s, Captain Prepare dinner explored the South Pacific and gave his crew tea brewed from the leaves of this plant.
This led to the frequent title New Zealand Tea Tree which is way simpler to pronounce than its scientific title.
Chances are you’ll hear this plant known as by different frequent names together with:
Broom tea tree
In addition to utilizing the leaves to brew tea, elements of the plant have served different makes use of.
New Zealanders used the wooden to make handles for instruments, whereas the sawdust supplies taste when smoking meats or fish.
Whereas it’s not the simplest plant to develop, a number of fundamental care suggestions ought to assist enhance the possibility of profitable cultivation.
Leptospermum Scoparium Care
Measurement & Progress
The New Zealand Tea Tree produces dense, bushy foliage and reaches a top of about three’ ft.
It’s a medium grower and should take a number of years to realize a top of greater than a foot.
When absolutely mature, the plant resembles a small tree with delicate branches.
The leaves are grayish or darkish inexperienced and extremely tiny.
Flowering and Perfume
The flowers seem with 5 petals or double petals with a ruffled look.
It produces showy white flowers to pink or purple.
The plant’s bloom time begins in January.
The flowers additionally final a very long time, remaining on the plant till Might.
Because of the longevity of the flowers, they make nice cuttings for vases.
Gentle & Temperature
L. scoparium grows finest in full solar to partial shade when positioned outdoor.
It ought to by no means develop outdoor in areas the place temperatures drop under 40° levels Fahrenheit (four° C).
If cultivated indoors, place the plant close to a window the place it may possibly get brilliant daylight all through the morning and afternoon.
Indoor crops ought to nonetheless come out for the summer season.
The out of doors air is nice for the New Zealand Tea Tree if temperatures don’t drop under 40° levels Fahrenheit (four° C).
When the temperatures begin to drop, carry it indoors.
It may well stay in a cooler spot in the home by means of the winter, however it ought to nonetheless get numerous sunshine from a south-facing or west-facing window.
Cultivated inside USDA hardiness zones 9 and 11 (USDA Zone).
Watering and Feeding
Water the plant evenly all through the whole yr.
As an early bloomer, this plant stays energetic all year long.
The primary buds sometimes begin to seem in November.
After the buds seem, make sure the plant continues to get loads of water.
Water the plant each different week utilizing a liquid fertilizer till the tip of summer season when the flowers die.
Soil & Transplanting
The New Zealand Tea Tree grows properly in common soil with good drainage.
To enhance the drainage of poor soil, add some peat moss and sand.
Transplant the plant between early spring and late spring to freshen the soil.
If the roots appear crowded after eradicating the plant, think about shifting to a bigger pot.
Root rot might happen in overly moist soils.
After the plant flowers, trim again progress to handle the form of the plant.
TIP: Trimming the plant again within the fall can be a great time to take cuttings for propagation.
To trim the plant, use a pair of sharp scissors or clippers.
Begin with the highest of the plant, and trim not more than one-third of the plant.
The best way to Propagate Manuka
Use cuttings to provide new crops that includes flowers with the identical coloration because the mom plant.
When grown from seed, the plant might produce totally different colours of flowers.
Use immature wooden cuttings from the plant when taking cuttings in the course of the early summer season.
If taking cuttings in the course of the winter, select barely hardened stems.
Earlier than planting the cuttings, dip them in rooting hormone.
Plant the cuttings in a combination of perlite and peat.
Maintain the plant close to a brilliant window and water often when the soil dries out.
Inside about two months, the cuttings ought to take root.
Masking the reducing with plastic might pace up the rooting course of.
Tea Tree Essential Pests or Illness Issues?
The New Zealand Tea Tree not often suffers from pest infestations, however aphid and whiteflies often take over the plant.
If aphids seem, spray the plant with a combination of heat water and cleaning soap.
Deal with whitefly issues with an insecticide.
In addition to pest infestations, the plant might develop purple patches and its leaves.
The patches are an indication of fungal progress. Use a fungicide to cease it from spreading.
If the leaves begin to drop, the plant isn’t getting sufficient water.
Enhance the frequency of watering till the plant’s well being improves.
Steered Manuka Myrtle Makes use of
This gentle, ethereal bush makes an amazing addition to a big enclosed porch or conservatory.
In the summertime, transfer the plant to a balcony or patio the place it may possibly get recent air and extra sunshine.
Manuka important oil is obtained from the leaves and twigs of the plant via steam distillation.