Looking for a garden plant, with fabulous, fragrant foliage and a fast growth rate? When in bloom, the Eucalyptus Torquata really is something to behold.
It’s hardy and practically pest and problem free, with countless residential and commercial landscaping applications.
Pretty and perfect for beginner growers here’s what you need to know about growing torquata in your home.
What is Eucalyptus Torquata?
It’s fast-growing and flowers for most of the year, making it an attractive accent plant for gardens.
For beginner growers or experts, here’s a guide on how you can grow and care for your very own eucalyptus torquata tree.
The torquata or coral gum tree is endemic to the coastal regions of Western Australia, but it’s easy to see why it’s grown in popularity throughout Australia.
Also referenced as the Coral gum or Coolgardie gum, this cultivar of the myrtaceae family has many amazing landscaping applications.
Drought tolerant and water wise, this smaller variation of the eucalyptus plant enjoys growing in low elevation areas as well as stony slopes.
Still, this cultivar is quite adaptable and will adjust as long as it has plenty of sun and well-draining soil. The eucalyptus torquata tree boats a beautiful evergreen, round crown with blue/green pendulous foliage.
The most attractive aspect of the torquata is the bright, coral-coloured flowers which bloom throughout the year. Unfortunately, because of its magnificent flowering, it’s not an ideal option for anyone who suffers from allergies.The Coral Gum also has quite the wildlife value, as it’s blooms produce valuable nectar and its branches offer a wonderful nesting place for smaller birds.
Yes, this gorgeous tree will bring lots of birds, butterflies and bees to your backyard.
How to Grow Eucalyptus Torquata
Coral gum trees are fairly easily cultivated and once established will be largely hassle-free. However, it’s important to make sure you give your Coolgardie gum the right conditions in which to prosper.
The eucalyptus torquata tree grows best when it gets lots of direct sunlight, which makes it un-ideal for indoors. You can grow torquata in a pot, however, it is known to have fast-growing roots, so you’ll want to ensure your pot has plenty of space.
A key factor for eucalyptus plant health is well-draining soil. Waterlogged roots can cause a major issue. Clay, loam and sandy soils are all suitable for the torquata tree. You’ll want to maintain a higher alkaline soil PH level.
Growing Eucalyptus Torquata from Seed
Growing from a seed is your best bet when it comes to eucalyptus trees. While you can harvest seeds directly from a tree, it’s hard to tell which seeds are dormant. It’s recommended to rather buy your seeds to ensure that they’ll germinate.
Sowing of seeds should be carried in spring or autumn.
Here’s how best to sow your seeds:
- Clean and sterilize your seeding tray and then fill with a well-draining, porous seeding mix.
- Pour your torquata seeds onto your hand and sprinkle onto the surface of your soil. It’s important that your seeds remain uncovered initially.
- Water with a good amount of water so the seeds are able to lodge into the pores of the soil.
- Keep the seedling tray in a warm, shaded or semi-shaded spot.
- Keep soil moist by means of a mister so as not to disturb the seeds.
- Transplant once your seedling has produced at least one true leaf.
Take extreme care when transplanting so as not to damage any roots. Treating the soil in your garden or pot before planting is recommended.
Adding an extra-phosphorous fertilizer to the soil will help to stimulate root growth. Transplanting should be carried out in late fall, winter or early spring.
Can You Grow Coral Gum from a Cutting?
While growing from a cutting is possible, it’s not advised for novice growers and only an option for those who like a challenge.
Here’s how you can grow coral gum from a cutting:
- Use a cleansed, sharp grafting knife to remove a cutting, about 10 cm in length. You’ll want to ensure your cutting has at least one budding leaf.
- Dip the cut end into rooting hormone for about 30 seconds and then stick straight into perlite mix, root-end down.
- Cover your cutting and pot in plastic and place in a warm spot.
- Keep your soil moist through regular misting.
Eucalyptus Torquata Growth Rate
Once it gets going, your torquata tree will grow quite quickly. The torquata or coral gum growth rate is as much as 60cm per annum, which is quite a bit more than most trees.
Plus, this cultivar is known to live as long as 150 years, so your torquata will grow big and beautiful for years to come.
How to Care for Eucalyptus Torquata
When it comes to caring for your eucalyptus torquata coral gum, the most important factors will be your watering, pruning and staking.
Watering is the most important aspect of the three. While it is a drought tolerant plant, the torquata is used to getting lots of winter rain.
You’ll also want to ensure your Coolgardie gum gets enough water in the summer months, if rain is scarce. In its first two years of growth, water at least twice a week.
Once your tree is better established you can cut back and only water in particularly dry seasons.
Pruning is a vital part for any plant. It’ll help you to maintain your coral gum tree’s size and shape as well as stimulate vigorous growth. A solid cut back can be undertaken during the winter months.
Should you find any dead or droopy branches, you can remove these at any time with an electric or hand-held saw.
It is advisable to stake your tree while it is still young. Once planted you can simply secure the base of the trunk to a stake. Once your tree is strong enough, just remove the stake.
You won’t need to spend much time fertilizing your tree; however, it is recommended to add some occasional slow-release plant food during the growing stages of its first few years. Thereafter, you can cut back entirely.
Your coral gum should begin to bloom after its first growing year and generally blooms throughout most of spring, summer, autumn and sometimes even winter.
Should you notice brown or withered flowers, simply cut them off with a sharp pair of shears.
Potential Pests & Diseases
Eucalyptus trees are known to be quite hardy and not overly susceptible to pests and diseases. Torquata cultivars are resistant to verticillium wilt, however it’s good to keep an eye out for potential rot.
Especially if your tree’s roots have been particularly waterlogged. Another one to keep an eye out for is beetle borers and phytophthora.
Both can be treated, however, with natural insecticides or fungicides respectively.
Eucalyptus Torquata Tree Uses
As mentioned, this striking tree has plenty of landscaping applications. They are beautifully fragrant and aesthetically appealing, which makes them ideal for in planters on patios or as part of your garden.
Consider adding your Coolgardie gum into raised planters or use it as a flowering accent plant. The Coral Gum even makes for a great screening plant when pruned correctly.
Plus, this pretty plant provides plenty of shade so along a pool or as a garden-lining tree is also ideal. While the medicinal benefits of Eucalyptus trees are well known, there are no specific, known benefits to the torquata cultivar.
So, there you have it. Everything you’ll need to know to perfectly cultivate, grow and care for your very own coral gum tree. When planting, ensure plenty of sun and free-draining soil for optimal growth.
Whether as a shade plant or decorative addition, you’ll enjoy having the bright and beautiful Eucalyptus Torquata in your backyard.