Sarcococca hookeriana var. digyna 'Purple Stem'

20% off plants
2 litre pot £17.99 £14.39
in stock
Quantity 1 Plus Minus
Buy Sarcococca hookeriana var. digyna 'Purple Stem' sweet box: deliciously scented winter flowers

  • Position: partial to deep shade
  • Soil: moderately fertile, humus-rich, moist, well- drained soil
  • Rate of growth: slow-growing to average
  • Flowering period: December to March
  • Hardiness: fully hardy

    A suckering, evergreen shrub that gradually forms a dense thicket. The new shoots are flushed with an attractive dark purple-pink hue which gradually fades as the stems mature. The stems are clothed with slender, tapering, dark green leaves and in winter sweetly scented, pink-tinged, white flowers appear, which are followed by rounded blue-black fruit.

  • Garden care: In late-winter or early-spring lightly trim or prune back shoots that spoil the plant's symmetry. After pruning apply a generous 5-7cm (2-3in) mulch of well-rotted compost around the base of the plant.

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more info

Eventual height & spread

Sarcocca

4

planted in dry shade and growing as per expectations.

Barbara

north Hertfordshure

Yes

Sarcococca hookerianavar.digyna'Purple Stem'

4.0 1

100.0

Gosh if Crocus look to see how many Q's I have asked re my garden I will be banned from your website :O) However, your answers to some of my recent Q's has forced me to re think my garden, just as I thought I had sorted it :O( I am now thinking that I may plant a hedge of Sarcococca hookeriana 'Purple Stem' along the top of my retaining wall. However the border is only about foot wide (although it can extend into the field beyond). The border is east facing, do you think it will do OK there and how far apart do I plant them if I want an informal hedge? I have read so many different versions of how tall this will grow one source says 60cm another 1.5m!

Kat13

Hello, This plant has an eventual spread of around 1.5m and prefers not to be cut back too hard, so it probably is not going to be the right thing for your wall.

Helen

When should I plant this out?

ihill

Hello there As a general rule fully hardy plants that are grown in containers can be planted at any time of year as long as the soil isn't frozen solid or freezing outside. The best times are in the autumn when the soil is still warm enough to encourage root growth but the plant isn't in active growth, or the spring before the temperatures start to rise. This plant is fully hardy, but I would wait until this cold snap has passed before planting. However you can still keep the plant out in the garden until you are able to plant and it will be fine no matter what the weather.

Help with plants for N/East facing garden Hi, I have a little problem choosing some plants....... I really like the look and size of the 'Shady Pink' pre-designed corner planting plan, but our problem is that we have a north east facing garden, so we get no sun at all in the winter, and direct sun for only half a day on either side of the garden during the summer. Would this planting plan be suitable for that level of shade? We are actually are buying plants for the entire garden, so we'd need about 6 new shrubs, and maybe a small tree (we were thinking about the Prunus Amanogawa). Could you please help us with a few shrubs that would do well in these conditions? For perennials, we have been recommended; - Geranium Johnson's Blue, Kniphofia, Crocosmia, and Helleborus foetidus. Are these suitable? Many many thanks! Regards, Josee

Josee Mallet

Hello Josee, It is always difficult to give a definitive answer to the shade issue, but looking at the Shady Pink border, the most shade tolerant plants include Anemone hupehensis Hadspen Abundance, Thalictrum aquilegiifolium and Dryopteris erythrosora. If you click on the following link it will take you to all our shade-loving shrubs http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/plcid.1/vid.11/ and for the shade -loving perennials http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/perennials/plcid.2/vid.11/ Of the plants you have listed, the Prunus, Helleborus foetidus, Kniphofia and Crocosmia will be OK as long as there is more sun than shade. I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Plants for an difficult area HELP, please...... I have moved into one of those places where the front garden is just paving blocks (I do need to use it as I have no garage). I have managed to put in a curved triangular bed which is about 5 foot either side - I could increase this by another foot if it helps. The site is extremely windy, catches the frosts and only gets the sun in the late afternoon. Also rain runs down into this area. I am looking for ideas on what to plant......should I go for several small plants, or one specimen plant? Nothing can get taller than around 3 - 4 foot. I also plan to put some spring bulbs in, but I don't want to give myself too much work as I am a pensioner and on my own, and already have a reasonable sized back garden to cope with. Is this impossible or can you help me? Many thanks Sue

Susan Chipchase

Hello Sue, This does sound like a pretty inhospitable situation, so you will need some tough plants - here are your best options. Cotoneaster horiontalis http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/cotoneaster-horizontalis-/classid.1028/ Cotoneaster dammeri http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/cotoneaster-dammeri-/classid.1021/ Sarcococca confusa http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.sarcococca/ Viburnum davidii http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/viburnum-davidii-/classid.8067/ Aucuba (which can be cut back hard when necessary) http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.aucuba/ Skimmia http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.skimmia/ I hope this gives you a few ideas. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Sarcococca confusa-is it scented? Hi, Last spring I purchased a Sarcococca confusa as a gift for a friend after hearing on the radio about it's lovely perfume when it flowered in the winter, and that ideally it should be planted near the door to the house to best benefit the scent. Although my friend has told me her plant has been covered in flowers and looks really healthy there is no perfume at all which is quite disappointing. Have we just been unlucky or is there a specific variety I should have chosen as I intend to buy more of these plants. I would be very grateful if you could give me some advice on this. Many thanks June

Iain Yule

Hello There, The most commonly available Sarcococca is S, confusa and this has highly scented flowers. The S. hookeriana flowers are still quite scented, but not quite as strong. If she has one of these then I am mystified as to why hers does not give off a beautiful scent if it is in flower. I'm sorry not to be more help. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Winter flowering shrubs and climbers to plant with new hedge Hello, I have newly planted a hedge (made up from Hornbeam, Rosa rugosa, Blackthorn, Cornus, Hawthorn and Hazel) about 50ft long. I have been told that if I was to plant amongst the hedge some winter flowering Clematis such as 'Wisley Cream' it would give some nice colour these bleak winter months when the hedge is bare of foliage. The hedge is south facing and although the ground is ???good??? heavy Cambridgeshire clay the hedge has been planted in a trench back filled with leaf mulch, chipped wood and spent peat. Although I have said about in-planting Clematis in the hedge, I am open to other plant suggestions if you have any. Regards Terry

Terry Allum

Hello Terry, If you click on the following link it will take you to all our winter flowering climbers - of which the Jasminum is tougher and more like a shrub. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/climbers/plcid.15/vid.204/ Alternatively, this link will take you to all our winter flowering shrubs. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/plcid.1/vid.204/ I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Low maintenance exterior plants for office lightwell Hello Plant Doctor, Please advise on which evergreen plants would be suitable for a shady lightwell in my new office. Many Thanks, Colin

COLIN WATSON

Hello Colin, If you click on the following link it will take you to a selection of evergreen shrubs that can tolerate low light levels. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/plcid.1/vid.11/vid.228/ I hope this gives you a few ideas. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Plants for outside my front door Hi Crocus I live in a flat and have pots outside my external front door. What plants can I grow in pots, in semi shade that will attract the bees? Thank you for your help. Kind regards Guy

Guy Smith

Hello Guy, The following plants would be suitable for your pots. Forget-me-not (Myosotis species) Bellflowers (Campanula species) Cranesbill (Geranium species) Dahlia - single-flowered species and cultivars Hellebores (Helleborus species) Japanese anemone (Anemone ?? hybrida) Fritillaries (Fritillaria species) Grape hyacinth (Muscari species) Hyacinth (Hyacinthus orientalis) Siberian squill (Scilla siberica) Winter aconite (Eranthis hyemalis) Box (Buxus sempervirens) Christmas box (Sarcococca species) I hope this helps, Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Plants suitable for patio pots Hello I wanted to enquire if you have a Sarocococca hookeriana var. humilis, I looked online but it's not listed. I am askng for that particular plant, because I only have a patio and want plants that won't grow to an enormous size or require spectacular care. A rosemary and a dwarf syringa I bought from you are doing very well. Plants always arrive in very good condition which I really appreciate. A Myrtus communis subsp. 'Tarentina' which I potted up immediately in a larger pot suffered shock I think, - I wonder what you know about this myrtle? I am wanting to grow plants on a small patio in containers and wonder if the following plants are suitable:- Sarcococca hookeriana var. humilis (if you have got it) or a Sarcococca hookeriana digyna (which is in your listings). Winter Jasmine, or any of the other Jasmines, Wintersweet, Witchhazel, Abelia grandiflora but would this be too large for my patio- I am thinking of winter cheer with its red berries, and Nandina Domestica. Many thanks Bernadette

Bernadette Matthews

Hello Bernadette, I'm afraid we do not sell Sacrocococca hookeriana var. humilis, but the other two we list will be fine in a large pot as long as they are kept well fed and watered. It is my experience that most plants will cope if the pot is big enough and they are well looked after, however larger plants like the Jasminum nudiflorum, Wintersweet, Witchhazel, Abelia or Nandinas will eventually run out of steam and need to be placed into the garden. You should however be able to get a good few years from them. As for the Myrtus, I have not heard that they particularly dislike being moved, but as they are not fully hardy they need protection in winter. I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Difficult corner... Hi We have a problem area in our front garden. It is a triangular bed with two sides bounded by low walls, which form part of the boundaries to our property. The soil is more alkaline than acid, and has been described as silt, with quite a lot of flinty pebbles. Most of the front garden is lawn, with one rectangular bed below our kitchen window. Unfortunately for us the whole corner area is overshadowed from the south by our next door neighbour's tree. This is a walnut, which during the summer months cuts off most of the sunlight from the bed and which also throws a rain shadow over it. The tree is protected by a preservation order but it has had the crown lifted and thinned. It is now filling in downwards with flowers, leaves, nuts etc all falling into the triangular bed at regular intervals. It seems to dislike any neighbouring trees - we lost a rather lovely white-flowering prunus from our front lawn two years ago, the crown of which grew just high enough to touch a branch of the walnut. I have read that walnuts exude a toxic substance, to keep rivals at bay! We have one Camellia japonica (about 2.5 metres high) and one Fuchsia magellanica which apparently are reasonably happy in their situation ina corner. We planted a small Pittosporum tenuifolium (which is surviving but not at all happy) and two Ceanothus thyrsiflorus var. repens, both of which have died. We also planted six Vinca minor, three of which failed to survive. (The survivors have been moved to another bed). Are there any evergreen shrubs or perennials that might survive in this bed? We do want something that will at least partially block the view of a small block of flats on the opposite side of the road, but are finding it difficult to work out a solution to our present problem. So could you please suggest something that we could successfully plant, other than laurels or aucuba, both of which my wife dislikes. Kind regards Michael

Hello There, This is a very difficult situation for plants as there will be very little moisture and nutrients in the soil. The best plants will be the toughest, however even these will need to be kept really well fed and watered if they are to survive. Here are your best options Viburnum tinus http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.tinus/ Sarcococca http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.sarcococca/ Ilex http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/hedging/ilex-%C3%97--altaclerensis-golden-king/classid.4029/ Mahonia http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/mahonia-%C3%97-media-charity/classid.4158/ Euonymus fortunei varieties http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?CommonName=euonymus+for Alchemilla mollis http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=233&CategoryID= Pachysandra terminalis http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=3288&CategoryID= Bergenias http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?CommonName=bergenia Iris foetidissima http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=3073&CategoryID= Lamiums http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?CommonName=lamium Liriope muscari http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=3173&CategoryID= Cotoneaster dammeri http://www.crocus.co.uk/findplant/results/?ContentType=Plant_Card&ClassID=1021&CategoryID= I hope this gives you a few ideas. Helen Plant Doctor

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