Ceanothus ‘Concha’ (Californian Lilac)
A reliable, medium-sized dense evergreen shrub, Ceanothus ‘Concha’ produces a profusion of beautiful indigo blue flowers in late spring.
The sun-loving Californian lilac, as Ceanothus is commonly known, is native to central and north America where it can often be found in scrub on open hillsides. Fast growing, and flowering generously from its second season, Ceanothus ‘Concha’ has graceful arching branches but keeps a compact habit. In maturity it may reach to 4m tall and 4m wide.
Blooming from pretty purple-red buds, the small clusters of deep blue flowers arrive in abundance from April through to June. Once in flower, this free-standing evergreen shrub is a mass of gorgeous showy blue.
The narrow, finely toothed, alternate green glossy leaves, play a supporting role throughout the summer months. For the rest of the year they are perfect as an attractive and useful background foliage.
Ideally plant your Ceanothus ‘Concha’ close to a fence or wall, in a sunny sheltered spot. Ceanothus thrive in fertile, free-draining soil in full sun; it is also happy in chalky, alkaline soil. Ceanothus is a nitrogen-fixing shrub, (the roots contain the actinomycete bacteria Frankia) and it should therefore also be successful on bare soils.
Hardy throughout most of the UK, Ceanothus is ideal for gardens in coastal regions, and works well in a formal garden, and border. Just ensure it’s got lots of sun and some shelter, particularly in frost pockets or areas where cold spells are longer. And make sure you protect your new plant from cold winds, as the leaves can be scorched by harsh weather.
To care for your Ceanothus ‘Concha’, lightly prune after flowering, by trimming the current season’s growth to 2.5cm of last season’s growth. Then apply 6cm of mulch around the base of the plant.
Ceanothus ‘Concha’ is a hybrid between C. impressus x C. papillosus var. roweanus.
- Ultimate height 4m
- Ultimate spread 4m
- Time to ultimate height 10-20 years
- Full sun
- Moist, well-drained soil, alkaline to neutral
- After the plant has finished flowering, prune the shoots by one third.
- Apply 6cm of mulch around the base of the plant.
- RHS hardiness H4: hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
- Cottage garden and informal
- Coastal gardens
- Herbaceous flower borders and beds
- City and courtyard
- Wildlife gardens