1 Eucalyptus ‘Shannon Blue’ A hybrid bred for the floristry trade, this vigorous plant has stems of rounded, glaucous, silver leaves. It can be grown as a hedge and retains its colour through the winter. Unpruned height 10m. RHS H5†.
2 Eucalyptus nicholii An airy tree with narrow, almost feathery, sagegreen leaves. Its common name – narrow-leaved black peppermint – references its strongly aromatic foliage. Unpruned height 12m. RHS H5.
3 Eucalyptus pulverulenta ‘Baby Blue’ A compact, bushy cultivar that can be grown in a pot. The silvery-grey stems are long-lasting when cut for flower arrangements. Unpruned height 5m. RHS H5.
4 Eucalyptus gunnii The most widely grown species in the UK. It has peeling cream and brown bark, rounded, glaucous-blue juvenile leaves and elliptic or sickle-shaped, grey-green adult leaves. Several compact cultivars have been introduced. It grows rapidly and left unpruned can reach 18m. AGM*. RHS H5.
5 Eucalyptus glaucescens ‘Tinderry’ A vigorous, bushy form with sparkling silvery leaves and white stems. The new growth is tinged with pink. At its best when coppiced. Unpruned height 12m. RHS H5.
6 Eucalyptus rubida The young shoots have a coppery sheen over the silvery-blue, rounded leaves. The adult leaves are glaucous and elongated. Old bark flakes away to reveal a shiny white trunk. Unpruned height 15m. RHS H5.
7 Eucalyptus perriniana A moderately dense small tree with off-white, grey or green bark. Aromatic, elongated, bluishgreen young shoots produce distinctive perfoliate, juvenile leaves that eventually detach and spin on dried out stems. Adult foliage is glaucous and lance-shaped. Umbels of three white or cream flowers in summer. Unpruned height 10m. RHS H6.
8 Eucalyptus coccifera Lanceolate, peppermint-scented juvenile foliage on maroon shoots, with blue-green elongated adult foliage and mottled white and grey bark. Lots of small white flowers in the summer. Unpruned height 15m. RHS H5.
9 Eucalyptus archeri Smooth grey and white bark with occasional patches of pink. Juvenile foliage is grey-green on purple-flushed stems. Adult foliage is darker. Unpruned height 12m. RHS H5.
ADVICE FOR GROWING FOR FOLIAGE Choose the right species. Mulch, feed and water from April until September. Leave to grow for two season or until the trunk is over 5cm in diameter at a height of 1m from the ground. Pollard by cutting trunk to around 1m in mid March and any remaining branchlets to 2.5cm. Harvest the resulting regrowth October to March. Repeat annually.
1 Eucalyptus parvula Reddish stems on rounded juvenile leaves. Mature trees have willow-like foliage and the grey bark peels to reveal a silvery trunk. Unpruned height 10m. AGM. RHS H5.
2 Eucalyptus pauciflora subsp. debeuzevillei Prized for its marbled white and pale-grey bark and its spreading habit. The leaves are larger than in most species, with a leathery texture. Unpruned height 10m. AGM. RHS H6.
3 Eucalyptus kitsoniana Willow-like leaves and masses of small flowers. Performs particularly well as a screen or hedge. Will grow in wet soils and tolerates salt-laden winds. Unpruned height 5-10m. RHS H5.
4 Eucalyptus urnigera A fast-growing tree with peeling bark that is silvery white when young, maturing to a tapestry of grey, olive and gold. The young leaves and stems are silvery-grey, maturing to blue-grey. Unpruned height 15m. RHS H5.
5 Eucalyptus subcrenulata Smooth, grey bark with olive-green patches. When coppiced it makes a dense hedge of small, rounded leaves that are a glossy green, occasionally with a red edge. Unpruned height 15m. RHS H4.
6 Eucalyptus pauciflora subsp. niphophila Cream, green and grey patches of bark flake away to reveal a chalky white trunk. Usually grown as a multi-stemmed tree, it has elliptical grey-green leaves. Unpruned height 7m. AGM. RHS H6.
ADVICE FOR GROWING FOR SCREENING Select the right species for your site, soil type and purpose. Multi-stemmed eucalyptus make good screening trees up to 10m. Keep young trees free of grass and weeds for 1m diameter around the base and water with ten to 15 litres of water twice a week for the tree’s first summer. Feed with a general purpose fertiliser (Grafton uses Vitax Q4), sulphur chips and iron.
To keep at around 6-7m, prune from an early age (from two years old) to encourage bushiness. Keep the top of the canopy narrower than the base to ensure good light levels reach all parts of the tree. Prune in mid March and give a light trim in June if required. Never prune in winter.
Trees that are 10-15m will need a tree surgeon to reduce the crown every few years.