Melianthus major

2 litre pot £19.99
available to order from midsummer
Quantity 1 Plus Minus
Buy Melianthus major honey bush: Stunning, architectural plant with serrated leaves

This shrub is semi-evergreen, so it can lose some of its leaves in winter. In colder regions or more exposed gardens, it may lose them all, but then fresh new foliage appears again in spring.

  • Position: full sun
  • Soil: moderately fertile, moist but well-drained soil
  • Rate of growth: average to fast-growing
  • Flowering period: May to July
  • Hardiness: half hardy (will need winter protection)

    As they unfurl in early spring, the spectacular, grey-green leaves up to 50cm (20in) long reveal serrated edges that look as though they have been cut with pinking shears. This dramatic architectural shrub makes a stunning specimen for a sunny, perennial border or exotic-style garden in warmer areas of the country. In hot summers, it sends up curious tubular, reddish-brown flowers, but it is the wonderful foliage that stops you in your tracks. To stop it getting leggy, it is best cut back in early spring and the plant will make up to 1.5m growth in one season. To minimise the risk of frost damage it's important to provide a dry winter mulch. It is quite late into leaf in spring, so you do need to be patient, but you may be surprised by the amount of growth it will put on late in the year.

  • Garden care: Water frequently until established and apply a generous mulch of well-rotted manure or garden compost around the base of the plant in spring. Although it is a shrub, this plant is best treated as a perennial and cut down to within two or three buds from the base in early spring. It will shoot back from the base. Protect with a dry winter mulch of straw or bracken, especially in cold winters.

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Eventual height & spread

Eventual height and spread

Notes on Melianthus major

"Crisply serrate foliage, in misty blue-green, erupts from the ground in late summer and this impressive plant may even produce a totally superfluous waxy maroon-brown flower spike for you in hot summers"

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Fabulous plant


I am two years into creating a garden with a tropical feel with an emphasis on architectural plants. My Melianthus Major, planted in 2020, is one of the stars, I love the colour of the leaves and their shape. My only mistake was putting it in a slightly hidden area, I might move it in future to give it a better spot.

Surrey Jungle



Lovely specimen


I thought this was quite small when it arrived, but it has grown beautifully, surviving our mild winter. It is a must if you are looking for plants with interesting foliage

Alien Greenfinger



Id recoommend it


So far it is excellent - but fingers crossed against v cold weather. Needs some firm staking against wind




Very attractive plant.. grown huge in 8 months!


I planted this eight months ago and it has grown so much and had 5 new shoots coming through.. fragrant smell of nuts when touched.. very attractive foilage.






What a showstopper of a plant . It has grown substantially in one season and adds an architectural feature to my cottage garden .




I would buy this item again


Everything I hoped for... I saw one growing in an established formal garden. Mine now looks just as amazing. A healthy specimen.




Great feature plant


In a big pot in the corner on its own. Gets a lot of comments. Strange nutty small like peanuts. Nice when the leaves are growing. Very architectural. So much so that I photographed it for a competition.




statement plant


my melianthus is in a big pot kept outside. it weathered last winter (quite mild) well. I pruned it back in spring and it re-sprouted quickly. the leaves have a smell reminiscent of peanuts! I love it.


east anglia


Beautiful leaf


Beautiful silver grey green serrated leaf has grown really well over the summer, however, limited height gain and have never seen them the 3m tall suggested on the site. A lovely interesting plant though which seems to have been unfazed by the frost.




Excellent Service Excellent Quality


The plant was of excellent quality with a well established root ball. Packaging was perfect to ensure no plant damage. Ordering was easy and efficient on line. I would recommend and have done so Crocus to other gardeners.





5.0 10


Can you advise what we should protect Melianthus major with? I did protect my plant with mulch/well rotted manure over last winter but lost the plant. Should I have used fleece or possibly straw? any tips would be appreciated as I am going to try and grow another one. I have chosen a slightly shady bed for this plant, does that have a negative implications for this plant?


Hello, We recommend protecting them with a dry winter mulch of straw or bracken especially in cold winters.


I have nine Melianthus major grown from seed I now want to put them into large pots that I already have 50cm diameter x 40cm deep so that I can have them on the patio during the summer but move to shelter in winter. Can you please advise the best growing medium to plant them into?


Hello, The best compost for this would be loam-based, so John Innes No.2 would be ideal.


Is my Melianthus OK? I have a Melianthus major in my garden which is looking decidedly dead! Is it dormant or have I killed it?

Lynn Beasley

This does not sound great I'm afraid and Melianthus is an evergreen shrub, which should keep its leaves on throughout the winter. It is not fully hardy though and does need protection when the temperatures drop, so it may have been killed off by the excessively cold weather we had earlier in the year.



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