Eucalyptus

A detail image of Seeded and Spiral Eucalyptus

Common Names: Ecualyptus, Silver Dollar Ecualyptus, Seeded Ecualyptus, Willow Ecualyptus, Baby Blue Ecualyptus

Botanical names: Eucalyptus, (yoo-ka-LIP-tus)

Availability: Year round

Vase life: 7 to 28 days

Storage temperatures: 36 to 38 degrees Fahrenheit

Ethylene Sensitive: No

Description: Over 200 species of foliage of widely varying shapes. The three primary varieties available to floral designers are Baby Blue Eucalyptus - blue-grey rounded leaves encasing a stiff upright stem, Seeded Eucalyptus - elongated willow like leaves and delicate seeds on long draping stems. Round, oval shaped leaves with seeds on flexible branching stems. Numerous species grown for the distinctively shaped seed pods.

Color: Foliage color varies by species; blue-green, green, dark green, silver-grey

Botanical facts: The name is from the Greek words eu (well) and kalypto (to cover), referring to how the calyx forms a lid over the flowers in the bud. Eucalyptus oil is an herbal remedy used for respiratory ailments. Eucalyptus is native to Australia and Tasmania.

Design notes: A wonderful group of fragrant foliages which can be used to establish line, texture and create motion in a floral design.

Purchasing hints: Purchase foliage that is turgid and pliable. Avoid foliage with wilted tips or damaged leaves.

Conditioning: Remove all foliage that will be below the water line. Give the woody stem ends a fresh break or cut. Hydrate in a solution of water and commercial floral food for two hours before storage or usage.

Additional notes: Eucalyptus will produce damaging levels of ethylene if water-stressed. Removing leaves from eucalyptus will produce a sticky residue. This can be removed from your hands by using a soap that contains lanolin. You may want to use gloves when working with eucalyptus.