It has a dark brown trunk, with slightly fissured bark, the foliage is roundish, densely branched; the leaves are oval, with an undulating margin, of a dark green colour, greyish on the lower page, have a leathery consistency and are slightly waxy.
In January-February, the shrubs of Garrya elliptica produce long yellowish catkins, longer in the masculine specimens, become silver-grey with the passing of the days; they are produced at the apex of the branches, from which fall down pendulous, even 20-25 cm long. In spring, small dark seeds detach from the catkins, covered by a soft down.
It is an erect evergreen plant that is often used for ornamental purposes.
The Garrya elliptica should be planted in a sunny, or preferably semi-shady, place; these plants can bear very well the cold, but it is advisable to plant them sheltered from the winds and the summer sun, especially in regions with very high summer temperatures.
For an optimal development, this plant needs a few hours of exposure to direct sunlight, provided that the temperatures are not too high. When very cold temperatures are expected, it would be better to cover the base of the Garrya elliptica with leaves, straw or mulch to ensure greater protection.
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Usually these trees are satisfied with the rains, because they have no problems even during long periods of drought. For a correct maintenance you can provide water every 2-3 weeks, checking that the soil is well drained and dry to avoid water stagnation.
In autumn, bury the mature organic fertiliser at the foot of the stem.
At the end of winter it is possible to add to the soil surrounding the plant organic fertilizer or slow release synthetic fertilizer. In spring, then, you can add every 15-20 days of the fertilizer to the water with which we water the plants. The fertilizer to be used in this period should be rich in nitrogen and potassium so that this favors the development of new vegetation and more lush blooms.
These shrubs prefer rich, loose and well drained soils, even if they can develop without problems in any soil, even if dry and very poor. It is always advisable to add some sand, or other inconsistent material, to the soil when planting these plants, which are afraid of waterlogging.
The multiplication of this type of shrub occurs by seed, in spring, or by semi-woody cutting in late summer.
Garrya elliptica: Parasites and diseases
The Garrya elliptica is generally not affected by parasites, being a plant rather resistant to attack, but we must pay particular attention to water stagnations that could cause dangerous root rot that would compromise the integrity and health of the plant. If it is considered useful, it is possible to carry out preventive interventions involving the use of insecticide and fungicide substances to prevent the possibility of the plant developing fungi that could ruin it.