Eucalyptus Houseplant: How To Grow Eucalyptus In A Container

Eucalyptus Houseplant: How To Grow Eucalyptus In A Container

By: Teo Spengler

Anyone used to seeing eucalyptus trees stretch to the skies in parks or woodlands may be surprised to see eucalyptus growing indoors. Potted eucalyptus trees make a pretty and fragrant potted plant on your patio or inside your house.

Eucalyptus Growing Indoors

Outside, eucalyptus trees (Eucalyptus spp.) grow to 60 feet tall (18 m.) and those half-moon-shaped leaves flutter in the breeze. They are tall evergreen trees with aromatic leaves. But the tree grows well indoors too.

Potted eucalyptus trees can be grown as container perennials until they get so big that they must be planted in the backyard or donated to a park. Eucalyptus houseplants grow so fast that they can be grown as annuals. Grown from seed planted in the spring, the trees will rise to 8 feet high (2 m.) in one season.

How to Grow Eucalyptus in a Container

If you are interested in growing eucalyptus indoors, you need to learn how to grow eucalyptus in a container. The rules are few, but important.

If you use a conventional, round pot for your eucalyptus houseplants, the roots are very likely to start circling the inside of the pot. In time, they will be so tightly wound that you will not be able to transplant the tree.

Instead, plant your tree in a large, cone-shaped Air-pot. That way, you can transplant it outdoors or donate it to the park if you like. Plant it in well-drained, fertile soil and give it ample water on a regular basis.

Once a week, add liquid food to your plant water. Do this from early spring through the end of summer to feed your eucalyptus houseplant. Use a low nitrogen fertilizer.

Where to Place Potted Eucalyptus Plants

Eucalyptus, potted or not, require full sun to thrive. Place your eucalyptus houseplants on the patio in a sunny, sheltered location where it is easy for you to water it.

You can also dig a hole and place the container in it, sunk to the pot lip, all summer long. In mild climates, leave the plant outside permanently.

In a cold climate, you must bring the plant indoors before the first frost of autumn. You can cut bushy plants to the ground before overwintering and store in a cool basement or garage.

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Food and Water

Water requirements for established silver dollar plants vary. Like any plant, it needs regular weekly watering for the first year until it is established. After that, the plant is drought-tolerant, and you can water it every few weeks if you have it planted in your yard or even skip watering althogether. Continue with weekly watering if your silver dollar grows in a container on your deck or patio, especially in very dry and hot climates. Feed the plant in early spring before new growth emerges, using a balanced fertilizer.

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Eucalyptus Trees (Eucalyptus gunnii) Cider Gum Tree

A magnificent and fast growing evergreen tree with vivid glaucous blue rounded foliage that is especially colourful on younger growth. In late summer attractive clusters of white flowers appear on established trees, this is a great plant to bring a splash of colour into the garden.

Grow Eucalyptus trees in any good, well drained soil that doesnt dry out completely in summer (on thinner soils add a generous quantity of organic matter at planting time, well mixed. together with a mulch after planting). They grow best in conditions of full sun or partial shade. Eucalyptus trees are native to Australia and so prefer a sheltered spot away from the harshest winter weather but otherwise this is a very easy tree to grow. (if the trees are damaged by cold winter conditions they will almost always re grow from further down the trunk).

The young foliage of Eucalyptus trees is very popular with flower arrangers, it makes a great foil for many colours in arrangements. If the plants are pruned back to restrict their size then ample amounts of this valuable foliage will be produced. This also makes the colourful Cider Gum Tree suitable for more modestly sized gardens where its silvery blue foliage will look great against the bright colours of flowers and perennials.

Mature Eucalyptus Trees can attain a height of 12 metres or more after 20 years, when pruned as a shrub each springthis can be reduced to 3-4 metres making them worthy of consideration for gardens of a more modest size.

Our Eucalyptus Trees are all grown in pots making them ideal for planting at any time of year because their is no root distrurbance. When planting them we always recommend adding rootgrow to the planting hole to give your new tree the very best start.

What grows best under eucalyptus?

What to grow under eucalyptus?

Joy K. writes: I am looking for an 8- to 10-foot shrub or bush that will grow under eucalyptus trees. The neighbor has these trees, which we appreciate for the privacy, but we need something for our side of the fence that will thrive. How about photinia or pyracantha or bottlebrush? The area gets morning sun and afternoon shade. I also wonder about planting masses of lavender.

As you drive around the Santa Rosa area, you will see many types of eucalyptus and a variety of shrubs that appear to be thriving near them. I have even seen redwood trees growing happily next to eucalyptus. Eucalyptus trees tolerate alkaline soils, so the best choices are those plants that also tolerate alkalinity.

Bottlebrush is one of those shrubs. When planted in linear multiples, it fulfills the need for a full and good-looking privacy screen. Another one of its attributes is its bright red bottle-shaped bloom that lasts for a long time. Plus, the bloom attracts our valuable bees.

Do watch for root competition from the eucalyptus. No matter what tree or shrub is planted, it is always difficult to plant very close to the main trunk of a eucalyptus. All the underlying plants suffer as they compete for nutrients with the tight mass of eucalyptus roots.

Photinia and pyracantha are prone to disease, so they’re not good choices. Oleanders are a possibility, but they really prefer full sun. Lavender also prefers six hours or more of full sun exposure.

Yellow versus white onions

Arnie R. asks: My wife asked me to pick up some white onions and I purchased yellow onions. She was not pleased with my choice. What is the difference?

Yellow onions are used in standard cooking recipes unless a different type is called for. Sweet yellow onions are used in salads, garnishes and relishes and have a sweet and mild flavor. Examples of sweet onions are Vidalias, Walla Walla and Mauis. According to the National Onion Association, these onions hold up extremely well in the process of caramelizing.

White onions are used in Mexican dishes and grilling. They have a stronger flavor and tend to have less of an aftertaste than other onions. Their lightly sweet flavor complements salsas and guacamole. Some barbecue restaurants like to use white onions in potato and macaroni salads.

Thank you to The Taste of Home for the preceding onion review. For additional information on the different types of onions and their use, refer to their website,

Pruning tips

We receive many questions about pruning techniques for various types of plants. Plants have a genetic commitment that determines how they will respond to their environment and their own growth habits, such as their rate of growth, mature shape, bark texture and whether they’ll have sparse foliage and small or large fruit crops.

Pruning can change, to some degree, these genetic growth habits, but not completely.

Understanding the individual plant’s growth habits and the phenomenon called apical dominance (also known as the tallest-growing shoot tip or terminal bud) will help you decide which pruning applications to use to retain the plant’s natural growth habits.

For example, you may see an ornamental street tree with two equally tall and strong leaders (apical dominance). This double leader can eventually result in a weakened tree structure. Pruning (eliminating) one of the leaders early on can help ensure the tree will be a strong mature specimen.

Training conifers for height

Joan Nelson writes: The recent severe windstorm snapped off the tender tip of our evergreen conifer. Is there any way to prune or train this young tree to encourage more height? We really didn’t want a short, stubby tree in this location.

If you like the shape of the rest of the tree, you might try this simple technique that develops a new main leader and maintains the desired conical shape of the conifer.

Gently tie one of limber and immediate lower-side shoots to the side of the old broken leader. It will become the new dominant central leader and straighten out in time. Multiple leaders may try to develop, so shear them back just below the new leader.

Sobaria pruning

Daniel writes: I was given an unusual Sobaria and plan on pruning it after it blooms. Any other advice that you can offer on its care will be appreciated.

The general rule of pruning flower shrubs does not apply to Sobaria, commonly referred to false spiraea. This shrub is pruned hard during the late winter, as it blooms on new wood. If this is a young shrub, first develop a strong framework over several seasons, allowing new basal shoots to replace old parts of the developed framework. The foot-long flower clusters can be cut off after the bloom to tidy up the shrub.

Sobaria can sucker and spread quickly in rich, moist soil. Some gardeners curb the growth by planting it in a very large decorative container. Add new soil and frequently repot the plant to prevent it from becoming root-bound.

False spiraea is an unusual shrub/tree that is infrequently seen in our area, but it certainly seems to thrive here as well as in extremely cold zones.

Fragrant Outdoor Plants to Leave Your Garden Smelling Fantastic

Beauty is an important landscaping consideration for your garden and the rest of your yard, but adding flowers that smell good appeals to your other senses, too. Enjoying the different fragrances at various times of day is refreshing and and boost a blue mood in a hurry.

Lilac (Syringa): Hardy, Fragrant Plants that are Easy to Maintain


If you are looking for fragrant flowering shrubs, you can’t get better than the lilac. Lilac is a great, low-maintenance plant that comes in seven different beautiful colors, not just purple seen here. These flowers bloom in late spring through the summer and give off a pleasant, sweet scent.

Lilacs are also an excellent way to attract pollinators like butterflies to your garden but are not appropriate plants to get rid of flies, as they like the sweet smell, too. While these plants are easy to grow, hot and humid climates are not ideal for them.

Lilac grows best in places with cooler summers, where it can receive full sunlight without overexposure to heat. Proper drainage of the soil is also key to ensuring the plant’s success. Growing it in an elevated location with a fair distance between it and other plants will help maintain the soil quality.

Sweet Alyssum (Lobularia maritima): The Perfect Ground Cover Plant for Your Garden


Often used to attract butterflies in gardens, this fragrant ground cover plant is a beautiful way to fill in spaces around taller plants. In large bunches, these beautiful and easy outdoor plants give off a delightful smell like honey and may come with purple, pink, or white petals.

Bloom time for this flower begins in spring and can last until the first frost. Sweet Alyssum grows best in mild and warm climates. While it can also withstand the hot and humid weather of Southern states like Florida, it will not live as long as it would in regions further north.

Sweet Alyssum should receive at least 6 hours of full sun for optimum blooming but also fares well in partial shade. Keep the soil moist with increased watering in drier weather and the hot summer months.

Angel’s Trumpet (Brugmansia): Exquisite Night-Blooming Flowers for Moon Gardens


For those looking for a great addition to your moon gardens, Angel’s Trumpet may be the one for you. The sweet fragrance of this flower is most potent at night when it blooms, making it the perfect scent booster for a nighttime stroll. The flowers bloom in spring to late fall and can last year-round in hotter climates.

Angel’s Trumpets are tropical perennials but can still thrive in cooler climates with enough sun exposure to give them some added warmth. While lovely in appearance and smell, this plant is also highly toxic.

As a member of the Nightshade family, the plant should be placed somewhere out of the way and should not even be handled unless wearing gloves. Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides): Stronger Fragrance


Jasmine is one of the strongest scented flowers. In pure jasmine form, the flower’s warm, sweet scent is highly aromatic, especially in the springtime when the flowers bloom. Despite its name, the Star Jasmine is not real jasmine and is related in scent only.

Instead, Star Jasmine falls in the same family as periwinkle and oleander. Star Jasmine can be used as a fragrant ground cover plant, like Sweet Alyssum, or as climbing vines on trellises.

It blooms best with full sun and in warmer climates and should be brought inside for the winter in colder regions. For best results, water Star Jasmine once a week or when the soil begins to feel dry.

Carolina Allspice (Calycanthus floridus): An Excellent Ingredient for Homemade Potpourri


Another hardy, low-maintenance plant is the Carolina allspice. This plant gives off a fruity scent in mid-spring, similar to a banana and strawberry fragrance. It is an ingredient commonly used to make potpourri, giving it the added benefit of freshening the inside of your house, too.

These shrubs are sometimes considered fragrant blooming trees and do well in most climates throughout the United States, including most of the northern states to the southern states.

Provide it with full sun for several hours a day and keep the soil moist. As with most plants in warmer weather, it should be kept in partial shade and frequently watered in drier, hotter climates.

Lily of the Valley (Convallaria): Great for Gardens with Shaded Areas


If your yard has too many shaded areas to sustain a sun-soaking plant, Lily of the Valley is a great option. These flowering plants do well in part shade and provide attractive ground cover at the base of trees. The delicious scent of these tiny white blooms is divine and strongest from spring to early summer.

Lily of the Valley does well in most of the continental US, but it is better suited for cooler climates. Using loam soil and keeping it well drained will help the flowers stay healthy and blooming. This plant is also toxic if ingested, so wear gloves as an added precaution when handling.

Oriental Lilies (Lilium orientalis): A Hardy Plant for Winter and Larger Gardens


Oriental lilies are among the more robust scented flowers in their family. Their intense aroma is perfect for wider, open gardens where stronger smells can travel further. They are also easy to maintain if planted in a great location with plenty of sunlight and elevation for proper draining.

While the flowers bloom between mid to late summer and fall, they have been known to bloom as early as spring. Oriental lilies do best in cool to warm climates and tend to do well in the average winter.

When weather is too hot, this can keep the flower from entering its dormant period which should last for approximately two months. This period is essential for the plant to be able to bloom the following summer. Think of it as the Oriental lily needing her beauty sleep.

Mock Orange (Philadelphus virginalis): Use These Freshly Cut Flowers to Deodorize Your Home Inside and Out


The citrusy scent of the mock orange shrub is true to its namesake, even if it isn’t a real orange tree. The fragrant white flowers bloom for only a short period in the spring and need to be pruned once a year to make way for the next year’s buds.

This requirement makes them excellent as cut flowers and can be placed in odor-heavy locations like bathrooms to reduce the presence of toilet smells.

Mock orange shrubs develop best in moist, well-drained loam soil. They require full sun to grow but are also adept at handling harsh winters. No special treatment is necessary to prepare these shrubs for the cold. They can even withstand temperatures that drop below freezing.

Frangipani (Plumeria ruba): Fragrant Flowering Trees that Give Your Garden an “Island Feel”


There’s a reason why plumeria flowers symbolize positivity in Hawaiian culture and are frequently strung together to create stunning leis for celebrations. These flowering trees make a beautiful addition to your garden with a bloom time that lasts year-round in warmer climates.

This means more time for you to enjoy those breathtaking aromas. Plumeria comes in a variety of shades and colors with fragrances that range from fruity undertones to a warm, spicy scent.

These tropical plants require at least 6 hours of full sun and should be grown inside in containers in colder climates. Allowing their soil to dry out a little in between waterings will also prevent them from getting too much moisture.

Though plumeria can grow to 20 ft, with proper care and pruning, these plants are easily kept as small trees in gardens or even potted plants indoors.