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Bottlebrush Tree

Callistemon spp.

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Zones 8-10

The Bottlebrush Tree from Australia is rated to grow all over the State of Florida and all of zone 9 and some warmer parts of zone 8.  A small tree to about 15 feet, it is related to the Cajetput-tree and guava

Photo at the top of the page is Callistemon rigidus, the "Erect" Bottlebrush Tree

Many folks also like the weeping variety, whose Latin is Callistemon viminalis


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Weeping Bottlebrush grows to about 20 feet in Florida, but closer to 60 feet in its native soils Down Under.  All together, there are about 20 shrubs and trees in this family, Callistemon

Another variety, Callistemon citrinus, is a larger tree to about 20 feet and best suited to weather in Central and North Florida.  Also native to Australia's New South Wales, the citrinus has 4 inch colorful blooms shaped like an elongated egg versus the cylinder shape

You can see in this picture how the Callistemon rigidus gets its common name. The flower "brushes" are bright and shiny and the red is the classic color for this plant.  Expect blooms starting in late spring

The leaves are aromatic and a nice strong green.

Plant in full sun for best show of color.  Most soils are suitable if they are well drained.  Dryer soils than are common in South Florida are preferred so don't add water unnecessarily. Also, buy a small plant as they transplant poorly.

Callistemon Bottle Brush varieties include:

  • Callistemon brachyandrus
  • Callistemon citrinus
  • Callistemon citrinus 'Little John'
  • Callistemon citrinus 'Splendens'
  • Callistemon formosus
  • Callistemon lanceolatus (citrinus)
  • Callistemon pallidus
  • Callistemon rigidus - Erect
  • Callistemon 'Red Cluster'
  • Callistemon salingus
  • Callistemon sieberi 'Powell's Hardy Red'
  • Callistemon subulatus
  • Callistemon violaceus - Purple Bottlebrush
  • Callistemon viminalis - Weeping
  • Callistemon viminalis - 'Hannah Ray'
  • Callistemon viminalis - 'Texas'