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Products > Ligustrum japonicum
 
Ligustrum japonicum - Japanese Privet
   
Image of Ligustrum japonicum
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Oleaceae (Olives)
Origin: Japan (Asia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Spring/Summer
Height: 8-12 feet
Width: 6-8 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: <15 F
May be Poisonous  (More Info): Yes
Ligustrum japonicum (Japanese Privet) - This is a fast-growing dense evergreen shrub or small tree that typically grows 8-12 feet tall and 6-8 feet wide but old specimens are often larger. It has thick rounded oblong leaves up to 4 inches long that are glossy green above and whitish underneath with new growth flushed red. Fragrant (some consider this a good smell but most do not) small white flowers bloom in terminal panicles in late spring to early summer and are followed by 1/4 inch wide blue-black berries.

Plant in sun or light shade and water regularly, occasionally to infrequently. Cold hardy to below 15 degrees F and useful in USDA zones 7b-10. This plant is tolerant of most conditions including saline soils but not particularly good along seashore nor permanently wet situations. It makes a relatively drought tolerant hedge or large screen where close planting and pruning keeps it taller than wide, but out on its own it can become a broader canopied small tree. The musky scented flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies and the fruit to birds, though they are considered poisonous to humans if eaten in quantity.

Ligustrum japonicum is native to central and southern Japan and Korea woods where it grows as a small tree or in thickets in lowland and along hills. The name for the genus originated in Latin as was applied by Pliny the Elder to Ligustrum vulgare. The specific epithet refers to the Japanese origins of this plant. This species has a long history of cultivation in the United State as it was first introduced into southeastern states in 1845 and was first listed by a California nursery in 1884 by R.D. Fox at his Santa Clara Nursery in San Jose, however by this time references note that it had already been planted in the Riverside, California area. We also grow the cultivar Ligustrum japonicum 'Texanum'

This information about Ligustrum japonicum displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.