Herself's Houston Garden

Conservation through cultivation

Wax Myrtle ( Myrica cerifera )




This wax myrtle, like all my shrubs, had been pruned to a mushroom shape by the previous owners. I consider it the horticultural equivalent of a french poodle hair cut. It has been two years, and I have blooms for the first time this year. It will take another year or two before it has a proper shape.

Wax myrtle can grow fast, and can reach 15′-20′ tall.

Wax myrtles make good screening plants and are loved by birds. The fruit was used by early colonists to make bay berry candles.

Any soil will do and they will grow in part shade to full sun.

Was myrtle handles Houston’s heat and cold just fine.

The ‘Emperor’ variety is the one with the lacy foliage. Myrica pusilla is a smaller variety.

This plant was attacked by some kind of very small beetle this summer. It looked fine, I went out to prune it and the insides had all been eaten away. Normally these are care free and I’d still recommend it as a shrub.

Just watch for small beetles around it.