Oleander, Rose Bay
Scientific Name: Nerium oleander L.
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Recommended Temperature Zone:|
sunset: 8-16, 18-31
Frost Tolerance: Hardy to 20° F (-7° C)
Sun Exposure: Prefers full sun, will take light shade. Tolerates reflective heat.
Origin: Middle East, Asia
Growth Habits: Evergreen shrub, fast growing to 10 feet tall (3 m), or lower for dwarf varieties.
Watering Needs: Little or no water once established
Propagation: Easily by cuttings
The oleander is one of the most usual shrubs in Phoenix. It is very resistant, blooms better in the most difficult situation. Just be aware that all the parts of this shrub are poisonous, and that if you are burning it, its smoke is toxic.
Most varieties reach a maximum height of 6' to 10' and 5' wide if not pruned for shape. It can be easily trained into a small tree with one or several trunks. The narrow leathery leaves are dark green and glossy clustered at the twig or branches.
For faster growth fertilize in spring with 5-10-5. Trim the tips of the stems after the flowers have dropped. Don't hesitate to cut back severely (to the ground if necessary).
The flowers are 2" to 3" across, clustered at end of branches. Depending on the variety it can bloom the year around in Phoenix, with main blooming periods in spring and fall. Removing the shoots at the base of the flower clusters promotes blooming.