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Products > Maireana sedifolia
Maireana sedifolia - Pearl Bluebush

[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Chenopodiaceae (Goosefoots)
Origin: Australia (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Insignificant
Bloomtime: Not Significant
Height: 3-5 feet
Width: 3-5 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Maireana sedifolia (Pearl Bluebush) - This small shrub grows typically to about 3 feet tall by as wide but occasionally seen with stems rising to 5 or 6 feet. It has small succulent white leaves that are crowded along the upright-growing stems. It has small paired pale pink to tan colored flowers that are barely noticeable. It does well in hot dry spots in the garden or in light shade in inland valleys and thrives in alkaline soils, both well drained and heavy though does poorly in wet soils. This plant is hardy to around 20 F (we lost plants at 18 F in the garden during the freeze of 1990). It is a unusual plant prized for its nearly white colored foliage that can be striking in the garden, especially when used with contrasting colored plants. Its long lasting foliage is useful in floral arrangement and it is often used for this purpose in Australia and Israel. Though it has a bit of an odd shape with upright stems rising above the main bulk of the plant, these can be pruned to shape to keep the plant denser or used to enhance the plants strange nature. Pearl Bluebush is native to a wide range within the arid and semi-arid areas of the Australian state of South Australia, where it often is the dominant plant. Most sources cite the name for the genus as honoring the 19th century French naturalist and botanist Charles Antoine Lemaire (18001871) but in reality, when the French doctor and naturalist Alfred Moquin-Tando first came up with the name describing Mairena tomentosa, the type species of the genus, he attributed the name to his friend Joseph Francois Maire (1780-1867), a little known naturalist who maintained an important herbarium in Paris. In Paul Wilson's revision of the genus in 1975 (Wilson, Paul G., "A Taxonomic Revision of the genus Maireana (Chenopodiaceae)". Nuytsia 2 (1): 47, 1975) he notes that Moquin-Tando named the genus "after the French naturalist Maire." Our thanks go out to David Hollombe for researching the etymology of this name. The specific epithet means "leaves like sedum" in reference to the succulent leaves looking like those of a Stonecrop. Our plants originally came from the Los Angeles Arboretum in 1989 where there is a very nice specimen in a raised planter in a patio behind the entrance buldlings. We have been growing and selling it at our nursery since 1992.  The information on this page is based on our research that has been conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in the nursery, in the nursery's garden, and in other gardens where it has been observed. We also incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that might aid others in growing  Maireana sedifolia.