Osmanthus armatus means “armed” sweet olive. Quite a funny name for a plant, don’t you think? It obviously refers to the shape of its leaves which are toothed at the margins but not prickly and I would definitely not say dangerous. They might cause a ladder but cannot bite a calf. They are dark olive green to mid green and quite large for an evergreen plant, on the other hand, 7-10 cm long, up to 4 cm wide. The leaves look very similar to chestnut leaves or ilex x koehneana.Sweet olive flowers in mid to end autumn with tiny, creamy white flowers of a lovely sweet fragrance. The shrub grows medium fast in a rounded to somewhat oval shape. Pruning is possible in mid spring or early summer when it makes new shoots.
Grow sweet olive in moist but well-drained, humus rich, preferably acidic soil. It likes full sun and in zone 6 we recommend planting it where sun does not shine in winter and early spring to keep it from sun scorch if the roots linger in frozen soil for a longer period of time. If grown in full sun and some leaves are burnt after winter just remove them, the plant will soon make new ones. Pest and disease free. Reliably hardy to -20°C, with some burnt foliage down to -24°C (USDA zone 6). Choose older plants for growing in zone 6.
Size/type: medium-sized shrub
Usual height: 1-2.5m
Usual width: 1-2.5m
Leaves: evergreen broadleaf
Colour of leaves: green
Flowers: less showy but noticeable
Colour of flowers: white
Blooming time: october - november
Location: full to partial sun
Usda zone (lowest): 6b (down to -21°c)
Belongs to categories: evergreen broadleaf
155 00 Praha Stodůlky, Za Mototechnou 2673/-11, Czech Republic