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Friday, March 13, 2009

Eucalyptus nicholii - Willow Peppermint

Another useful and attractive Eucalyptus. The willow peppermint has a great overall rounded shape, nice size, attractive foliage and a handsome fibrous bark make it an all around nice tree. Like so many other Eucalyptus, a broadleaf evergreen of moderate to fast growth to about 50' tall and 35-40' wide.



The upright main trunk and spreading laterals make for a nice rounded spreading habit. It has a slightly weeping feel due to the thin new shoots and the weeping habit of the foliage. In winter it takes on a light reddish to pink coloration to the green canopy.



Attractive, evergreen, alternately arranged, simple leaves, 3-5" long, by 1/8-1/4" or more wide, generally bluish green on both sides, narrowly lanceolate or slightly curved. Crushed foliage smells of peppermint. New foliage in spring can be reddish.



Flower small, white, in clusters of 7, flowering summer. Sorry, just pictures of the buds.



Bark is fibrous, brown or gray-brown, does not peel off.



Misidentification:
Just about any Eucalyptus! Not really, but sort of, this one has pretty small leaves smelling of peppermint (hence the name) and persistent bark. 

Locations: Lots, pretty common, nice one on Airport Blvd in Watsonville in an empty lot just past the hospital. 
The ones pictured are on Kennedy Drive in Capitola
Several nice big specimens at the empty lot at the corner of Brommer St. and 38th.

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