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Sarcococca hookeriana var. digyna 'Purple Stem'
  • RHS AGM
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

sweet box 'Purple Stem'

'Purple Stem' is a small evergreen shrub with narrow lanceolate leaves held alternately on purple stems. Small, delicate and muskily-scented light red and white flowers are borne in the leaf axils in winter

Synonyms
Sarcococca hookeriana 'Purple Stem'
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Size
Ultimate height
0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
1–1.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Purple Red Green
Summer Green Black
Autumn Green
Winter White Green
Position
  • Full shade
  • Partial shade
Aspect

West–facing or North–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Buxaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Suckering
Genus

Sarcococca are compact, sometimes suckering evergreen shrubs with simple, leathery leaves and tiny, fragrant creamy-white flowers in winter or spring, followed by red, purple or black berries which may persist into the following winter

Name status

Accepted

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile, moist but well-drained humus-rich soil in shade. Full sun may be tolerated when planted in damp soil. Also tolerant of atmospheric pollution, dry shade and neglect

Propagation

Propagate by semi-hardwood cuttings in late summer or by suckers

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Low Maintenance
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Garden edging
Pruning

Pruning group 8

Pests

Generally pest-free

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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