Plant of merit
The leaf colors range from yellow, peach, vanilla and white, appearing in swirls throughout the shrub. Commonly known as false holly, it's leaves are just as sharp as the real thing. Native to Japan, Osmanthus is easy to grow in the Pacific Northwest.
WHERE TO PLANT: Place it where the colors can be enjoyed in the winter or near windows as a security screen.
SUN OR SHADE: Osmanthus likes shade to part sun in our maritime climate. East of the mountains it would need a bit more shade.
SIZE: Osmanthus is slow growing, reaching six feet tall in 10 years, and ultimately 10 feet in height.
SEE IT: In the Urban Tree Walk alongside the parking lot, and also inside the arboretum on the west side. Evergreen Arboretum & Gardens, 145 Alverson Blvd., Everett. www.evergreenarboretum.com.
Source: Sandra Schumacher/Evergreen Arboretum & Gardens Foundation
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