Garrya elliptica var. James Roof

Silk Tassel.

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Garrya elliptica,  'James Roof' is a form of Silk Tassel that forms an evergreen shrub to small tree with yellowish male catkins 10 inches long in early spring. The catkins  turn gray as they age. The name silk tassel describes the catkins. Silk Tassel is native coast ranges San Luis Obispo Co. to Ore..

Silk Tassel likes sun near the coast, part shade inland with moderate water. It does not like being more than a few miles from the ocean as the large temperature swings make it unstable. If you are inland and you have a east wall or pool under high shade with summer temperatures never exceeding 100 F. you can try it. No cold damage at 12 deg., it got severely burned at 0, a couple did not recover. Deer generally don't eat these plants.

Garrya elliptica,  'James Roof' plants can become drought tolerant in moderate climates with rainfall above 20 inches, but looks a great deal better with garden water or on the edge of garden water. The plant itself has a v shape to it. Multi-stemmed from the base flaring (arching) to 8 ft. wide at 8 ft. The leaves are a green with a somewhat glossy top and gray underside. The stems are green to a reddish brown. It can look woodsy to formal according to its placement. I usually use it to transition from one to the other. Excellent with redwoods or against a red brick wall or walk.  Very effective as a native edge to a watered area like along your fence line and the uppity neighbors that insist on watering daily.

The best spot I ever put these into was in part-shade in San Luis Obispo in adobe soil with a drainage system draining next to them. They got to 15 ft tall in 2 years. The ones 10 feet away in sun and relying only on drip failed to reach 2 feet tall before they died. This is consistent with it growing like a weed in Britain.

Garrya elliptica var. James Roof tolerates clay and serpentine.

Foliage of Garrya elliptica var. James Roof has color green-gray and is evergreen.
Flower of Garrya elliptica var. James Roof has color white.

Communities for Garrya elliptica var. James Roof:Chaparral, Mixed-evergreen Forest and Northern Coastal Sage Scrub.

ph: 6.00 to 8.00
usda: 7 to 10
height[m]: 2.00 to 3.00
width[m]: 2.00 to 3.00
rainfall[cm]: 70.00 to 300.00

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Edited on Jan 14, 2014. Authors:
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