Myoporum sp., Ngaio

Myoporum sp.

Family: Scrophulariaceae    (Formerly:Myoporaceae)
Origin: New Zealand
USDA Zone: 9-11?
USDA Plant Hardiness MapLarge shrub 5-10 ft tallSemi-shadeFull sunDry conditionsModerate waterWhite, off-white flowersFragrant plant

Myoporum sp. (Ngaio) is a large shrub, usually 5-10 ft tall, native to New Zealand and Southeast Australia. With its glossy foliage and profusion of white, off-white flowers that are slightly fragrant, it's sure to bring life and beauty to any garden. Myoporum prefers to grow in full sun or semi-shade and requires moderate water in dry conditions. It's hardy in USDA Zones 9-11, and those living in colder climates can still enjoy it by growing it in a container and moving it indoors during the winter.

When planting Myoporum sp., it's best to cut back any long shoots to encourage a denser and more compact plant. Be sure not to over-water it as it will not tolerate a wet root zone, and water as soon as the soil in the pot begins to dry out. Ideally, it needs to be fertilized once every two weeks with a balanced fertilizer.

For those living in colder regions, this plant can be moved indoors in winter and kept in a bright location, with temperatures between 45-50°F. Indoor watering must be done with caution; the soil should dry out between waterings and care must be taken to avoid over-watering. Feed the plant every month with a balanced fertilizer and mist regularly to increase humidity. Pruning should also be done in winter, especially for those growing in pots, and any unhealthy shoots should be removed.

With proper planting, watering, and pruning, this plant promises to add beauty and life to any garden.

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