Azara microphylla

boxleaf azara


  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

This amazing small tree shines in the winter landscape. Tucked amongst the tiny evergreen foliage are clusters of yellow pom-pom like flowers that send out an intoxicating vanilla fragrance in January and February. Mature plants have gracefully layered branches. Perfect for planting under tall limbed up conifers.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: narrow tree

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 15 ft. 0 in. (4.57 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 6 ft. 0 in. (1.83 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 25 ft. 0 in. (7.62 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 12 ft. 0 in. (3.66 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Flower Color: yellow

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun or light to dappled shade

Water Requirements: regular to occasional

Seasonal Interest: year-round dainty foliage, early spring fragrance

Wildlife Associations: bees

Colors & Combos

Great Plant Combinations: Acer palmatum ‘Katsura’, Acer shirasawanum ‘Aureum’, Corylopsis spicata, Enkianthus campanulatus ‘Red Bells’, Hydrangea aspera ‘Macrophylla’

Great Color Contrasts: blue, white

Great Color Partners: dark green, chartreuse

Culture Notes
Azara is an excellent choice for full sun as well as light, open, or dappled shade and would prefer a spot protected from strong winter wind. Plant boxleaf azara in rich or sandy well-drained soil and, in more shaded locations, water occasionally during dry periods; water more regularly if planted in full sun. This small evergreen tree has a lovely branching habit and requires very little pruning to maintain its graceful form. The best time for removing dead, broken or poorly formed limbs is in late winter or early spring after flowering has finished.
Geek Notes
Azara microphylla is native to Chile and Argentina and was introduced to North American cultivation about 1861 by R. Pearce for Veitch nursery of England. It has been offered since 1895 or earlier in the California nursery trade.