Santolina

RKatzin

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While cruising a nursery in search of little plants to use in a rock planting I came upon something I'd not seen before and I thought it would be an interesting addition. It's a Santolina "Little Ness". Looking into it I discovered it is a dwarf variety of chamaecyparis. Drought resistant and likes the sun. Cute little accent plant. Anyone familiar with these little guys?
 

Shibui

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I thought Santolina was akin to Lavender. First I've heard of it being Chamaecyparis.
I have some Santolina rosemarinifolia AKA Olive herb - leaves smell like olive! It's a small, perennial shrub and definitely nothing like Chamaecyparis.
 

RKatzin

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The tag says Santolina chamaecyparisus. AKA Cotton Lavender, has yellow button flowers and is a common border hedge for rock and herb garden.
 

Arnold

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Chamaecyparisus means similar to chamaecyparis not related by any means to conifers, like Casuarina equisetifolia means equisetum like leaves
 

Shibui

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Latin names can be tricky for beginners. Genus (first part of the name) is the family name and tells who is related.
Species name (second part, no capital letter) is the individual name like our given name/ Christian name and is often descriptive as @Arnold has pointed out tells us the leaves look a bit like chamaecyparis but not related in any other way.
In this case the common name is more useful as it tells us this is something like lavender. Santolina is usually short lived and may not shoot from bare wood so needs regular trimming to maintain size and shape. I've found sudden death is common with santolina, esp if the roots are too wet for extended periods. Definitely likes well drained soils.
 

penumbra

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Santolina looks cool and is tempting, but as a bonsai it is just not going to work. You may get a year or two out of it but it won't last.
 

RKatzin

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Santolina looks cool and is tempting, but as a bonsai it is just not going to work. You may get a year or two out of it but it won't last.
Thanks everyone. I'll be doing a planted in rock project at our next club meeting later this month with juniper or cryptomeria as the main character and thought Santolina might make a nice side dish. Thanks for the input.
 
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