NewsRobinia is the Tree of the Year 2020
For the 31st time, the Tree of the Year has been chosen...
Chinese winter hazel, winter cherry – last year we brought you the most popular early-flowering trees. That’s why we’ve decided to focus on green this February. Oleaster ‘Vivileg’ (Elaeagnus ebbingei) keeps its leaves in the winter, which can otherwise be so bare, and it makes a pleasant change from the more well-known evergreen woody plants.
This shrub, with its upright growth, cuts a fine figure, and not just as a solo feature. It also looks impressive as part of a group of plants, in a large pot or even as a hedge, not least thanks to its striking foliage. The leaves of this variety of oleaster are variegated with dark green and yellow and are larger than the leaves of many other varieties of Elaeagnus, with a length of 15 cm and an oval shape. As a rule, this oleaster is an evergreen, although it may be that after a particularly heavy frost it will decide to shed its leaves after all. Yet there is no need for concern – it will produce new leaves as soon as the spring weather arrives.
Oleaster ‘Vivileg’ is a relatively undemanding plant and does well in both sunny spots and in partly shaded locations. It is happy in dry to damp soils, which may be anything from acidic through to slightly alkaline. With a height of just 2 metres, it is a little smaller than the other Elaeagnus ebbingei varieties. It has a more unusual flowering period, however – October to November. As nectar tends to be in short supply at this time of year, insects in particular are very happy to see the little white flowers of this oleaster.
To sum up: Oleaster ‘Vivileg’ makes a welcome change in the garden and it also provides an attractive source of nutrition for insects into the bargain.