556 Rhaphiolepis umbellataCommon Names: yeddo hawthorne, yedda hawthorne, Indian hawthorne Family: Rosaceae (rose Family)
The yeddo or yedda hawthorn is an evergreen shrub that that typically grows to 4-6 ft (10-15 m) in height and about the same width. Some selections, such as the popular 'Majestic Beauty', can reach 10 ft (3.1 m) in height. Leaves are thick and leathery and somewhat bent back, dark green and lustrous above with the underside lighter and duller. The fragrant white to light pink flowers are about 0.5 in (1.3 cm) across and held in 4-5 in (10-12.7 cm) long clusters. The blue-black berries ripen in fall and tend to be hidden among the leaves. They are held on the shrub into the winter to serve as a food source for birds.
Rhaphiolepis umbellata is a native of Japan. This shrub is sometime labeled as R. japonica which is a synonym.
CultureLikes and withstands drought once established. Quite salt tolerant and tough. Avoid oil sprays. Leaf spot can be a problem in some varieties, particularly in unfavorable cultural conditions. Light: Sun to part sun Moisture: Prefers moist, well drained, slightly acidic soils but is drought tolerant once established Hardiness: USDA Zones 8 - 11. Propagation: By seeds and cuttings.
Good for a sturdy hedge in a sunny, well drained area where very low maintenance is desired. A single specimen of the larger variety may be trained as a small tree, which it will become anyway if left untended. Dwarf types can be used to fill landscape beds and will require virtually no care.
This is an exceptional shrub to use for landscape projects at the beach. Yeddo hawthorne is very salt tolerant, has fragrant flowers and is easy to grow. In Japan a dye is prepared from yeddo hawthorn bark. A close cousin, the Indian hawthorn (Rhaphiolepis indica) is similar and also used as landscape items in mild-winter climates.
Jack Scheper 07/02/99; updated 11/17/07, 9/28/08