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Japanese pittosporum
Pittosporaceae
Pittosporum tobira


Thunder
Thunder
Flower Petal # 5
Main Color    
Color 2    
Type Categories Useful Parts

Shrub


Pittosporaceae Family

Pittosporum Genus
Other Names for this Plant

Japanese mockorange, tobira, Japanese Cheesewood, Japanese Laurel


Location

Southeastern Asia, native to China and Japan. In the US, Pittosporum tobira is a popular landscape item in Florida, along the Gulf Coast and throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Physical Description
This beautiful broadleafed evergreen shrub or small tree can reach up to 15 ft (4.6 m) in height and approximately the same in width. In general the Japanese pittosporum grows taller in the shade while those grown in full sun are more compact. In both situations the plant assumes an upright round-headed form with branches radiating out from around the stems. There is a dwarf variety that grows to only about 2 ft (0.6 m) in height called 'Wheeler's Dwarf'. This densely branched and compact shrub forms neat bushel basket size mounds that find use in groundcover plantings, especially in commercial landscapes

The leathery leaves are glossy on the top with undersides that are lighter and have a dull surface. These very ornamental leaves reach a length of from 1-5 in (2.5-12.7 cm) and up to 1 in (2.5 cm) wide with edges that recurve (curl down and inward). The leaves are arranged in a whorl around the stem.



Compare Species
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Pittosporaceae
Apiales
Apiales
Api Order (Carrot)
Euasterids II
Euasterids II
Real Stars Group Two
Asteridae
Asteridae
Class of Stars (Daisies)
Core Eudicots
Core Eudicots
Main, Real, Two First-Leaves (Dicots)
Eudicots
Eudicots
Real, Two First-Leaves (Dicots)
Mesangiospermae
Mesangiospermae
Half Capsule Seed Division
Magnoliophyta
Magnoliophyta
Magnolia Division
Spermatophytes
Spermatophytes
Seed Plants
Euphyllophytina
Real Land Plants
Polysporangiates
Multiple Spore Sub-Kingdom
Stomatophytes
Stomatophytes
Air Pores Sub-Kingdom
Embryophytes
Embryophytes
Multicellular Land Plants
Streptobionta
Streptobionta
Multicellular Plants
Plantae
Plantae
Plants
Eukaryota
Eukaryota
Cells with a Nucleus


General Information

This genus, Pittosporum, contains over 200 species of trees and shrubs native to the tropical regions of the world and most in the southern hemisphere. It was classified by Sir Joseph Banks, 1743-1820, who was perhaps the most famous of all the early plant explorers and among the founders of the Horticultural Society of London. He named it from the Greek for pitch and seed referring to the sticky seed coat. Carl Thunberg of the Dutch East India Company identified but incorrectly classified this species of Japan as Euonymus tobira, his species designation from the native Japanese name. It was accurately classified by William Aiton, 1731-1793 and since then about a dozen cultivars have been produced.

Cultivation: This plant is very adaptable and will grow in most soils except for those that are constantly wet. Moderate moisture is required for fastest growth and best looks. Established plants are able to survive long periods of drought but will look the worse for wear - will recover when adequate moisture is obtained. It requires sun to light shade. Hardy in Zones 8 - 10

Propagation: Seeds, semi-hardwood cuttings at the end of spring, or softwood cuttings in summer

Aroma: The flowers are not very noticeable, but they have a delightful orange-blossom fragrance. The flowers are very fragrant; they can pervade the air for a considerable distance

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Warning and Other Notes: This plant contains Saponins. Saponins are much more toxic to some creatures, such as fish, and hunting tribes have traditionally put large quantities of them in streams, lakes etc in order to stupefy or kill the fish



Japanese pittosporum




Japanese pittosporum




Japanese pittosporum


Comment: Japanese pittosporum, Pittosporum tobira

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