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Products > Ceratopetalum gummiferum 'Fairley's Coral'
Ceratopetalum gummiferum 'Fairley's Coral' - Festival Bush

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Cunoniaceae
Origin: Australia (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Red
Bloomtime: Summer
Height: 12-16 feet
Width: 6-8 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30 F
Ceratopetalum gummiferum 'Fairley's Coral' (Festival Bush) - This selection of the evergreen Ceratopetalum gummiferum is noted for its pale pink floral display at Christmas time in its native New South Wales, Australia, which gives this plant the common name Christmas Bush; for us in the northern hemisphere this display occurs in June. This plant generally grows in gardens into a large pyramidal shrub or small tree to 15 to 18 feet tall but it can reach 30 feet in height in its natural habit. The foliage of the plant is very attractive with 3 inch long glossy leaves divided into three finely-serrated leaflets. The new leaves emerge a pale color green with pink highlights and age to a rich bright green. In late spring erupts a display of small whitish flowers surronded be long salmon-pink sepals followed by a papery seed capsules darken after the flowers have faded. This often occurs in early to mid summer and this show can last well into fall if late summer temperatures are not too extreme and if plants are protected from wind. The sepals and foliage are widely used for cut flowers in Australia and more recently in the US where the common name is often listed as Festival Bush. Plant in full sun (best) to part day sun in a moderately-well to well-drained soil and irrigate regularly - do not let dry out completely! Might possibly benefits from an application of iron sulfate in spring or iron chelate. Vigorously regenerates after heavy pruning, which is best done soon after the flowering period in late summer. There is a wide variation in hardiness data on this plant but we are relatively sure that this plant is hardy to at least 25 F. This plant is a 2019 Koala Blooms University of California Santa Cruz Austrian Plant Introduction. In the UCSC Arboretum this plant has long been growing in a large container near their offic building and Helen Englesberg, the arboretum's longtime but now retired nursery manager, has told us that it well in containers as small as a nursery gallon can.  Information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it. We also will incorporate comments received from others and welcome 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 would aid others in growing Ceratopetalum 'Fairley's Coral'.