This type of plant is a shrub or small tree native to North America with deciduous leaves; there are 6-7 species of cephalanthus, widespread in America, Asia and Africa. This variety has an erect posture, and generally develops some stems, branched in a rather disorderly manner, which grow up to 2-3 meters high. They have brown bark, quite leathery; the leaves are large, lanceolate, dark green, shiny, with serrated edge.
Throughout the summer, it produces many small flowers of white or cream colour, grouped in spherical inflorescences, from which come out the long yellow stamens; the flowers of Cephalanthus occidentalis are very perfumed of honey, and attract bees and butterflies.
With regard to the exposure of the The Cephalanthus occidentalis we suggest locating it in a sunny or semi-shady place. For a correct development of the plant, it is best to position it in a place where it can receive a few hours of direct sunlight.
These plants don’t fear the cold and can bear temperatures even many degrees below zero; for greater security, in case of particularly rigid climate, it is possible to cover the area around the stem with mulch material, dry leaves or a protective cloth, in order to guarantee a greater shelter in case of exceptionally cold temperatures.
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In the wild, the Cephalanthus occidentalis develop near swamps or rot; for this reason, they need to be placed in water gardens or near small ponds, where the water is firm or not very animated. In the absence of these conditions, it is necessary to water very regularly, especially in periods of drought or with very high temperatures.
If these plants are then grown in pots, we will need to increase the frequency of watering to ensure the shrub the correct amount of moisture.
These small trees love heavy, very moist soils, which retain a lot of moisture; they need a clayey, compact soil, possibly enriched with shredded bark, which can retain moisture. Do not fear stagnant water. It is a good idea to check that the soil in which they are planted ensures that they have the right level of humidity at their disposal, if you want them to develop at their best.
The multiplication of this variety of plants takes place by seed in spring, with great ease and the young plants can be planted directly as soon as they have reached 25-30 cm in height. In autumn it is possible to make woody cuttings, or semi-woody cuttings at the beginning of spring.
Cephalanthus occidentalis: Pests and diseases
In general, this type of plant is not often affected by diseases and pests. It is possible that fungal diseases may occur due to the presence of a lot of moisture and for this reason it is possible to resort to the use of specific products; the same applies if you notice the presence of aphids. All treatments should be carried out before flowering, unless you think of using natural methods, such as the use of a preparation of water and garlic to remove aphids.