Cephalanthus occidentalis

Cephalanthus occidentalis

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This type of plant is a shrub or small tree native to northern America with deciduous leaves; there are 6-7 species of cephalanthus, widespread in America, Asia and Africa. This variety has an erect habit, and generally develops some stems, branched in a rather disordered manner, which grow up to 2-3 meters in height. They have brown bark, quite leathery; the leaves are large, lanceolate, dark green, glossy, with serrated edges. Throughout the summer it produces many small white or cream flowers, gathered in spherical inflorescences, from which the long yellow stamens emerge; the flowers of Cephalanthus occidentalis are very fragrant with honey, and attract bees and butterflies.


Regarding the exposure of Cephalanthus occidentalis, it is advisable to place it in a sunny or partially shady place. It is good, for a correct development of the plant, that it be placed in a place where it can receive some hours of direct sun.
These plants do not fear the cold and can even stand temperatures of many degrees below zero; for greater safety, in the case of particularly harsh climate, it is possible to cover the area around the stem with mulching material, dry leaves or a protective sheet, so as to guarantee greater shelter in case of exceptionally cold temperatures.


Cephalanthus occidentalis in nature develop near marshes or meadows; for this reason, they need to be planted in water gardens or near small ponds, where the water is still or not very busy. In the absence of these conditions it is necessary to water with great regularity, especially in periods of drought or with very high temperatures.
If then these plants are grown in pots, you will need to increase the frequency of watering to ensure the correct amount of moisture to the shrub.


These small trees like heavy, very moist soils that retain moisture very much; they need a clayey, compact soil, possibly enriched with shredded barks, which can retain moisture. They are not afraid of stagnant water. It is a good idea to check that the land in which they are planted ensures that they have the right degree of humidity available, if they want it to develop at their best.


The multiplication of this variety of plants occurs by seed in spring, with great ease and the young plants can be placed directly at home as soon as they reach 25-30 cm in height. In autumn it is possible to practice woody cuttings, or semi-woody cuttings in early spring.

Cephalanthus occidentalis: Pests and diseases

In general, this type of plant is not often affected by diseases and parasites. It is possible that fungal diseases arise due to the presence of a lot of humidity and for this reason it is possible to use specific products; the same is true if we note the presence of aphids. All treatments must be carried out before flowering, unless one thinks of using natural methods, such as using a preparation based on water and garlic to ward off aphids.