|Popular, but poisonous, pollution-, salt- and drought-tolerant Oleanders are used as hedges, windbreaks and freeway plants in desert and hot inland areas. Evergreen and deer-resistant, they need little care and grow rapidly. These 10 foot by 10 foot shrubs have narrow, leathery leaves that are usually dark green, but one type has gold markings. Some have fragrant blossoms, and single- and double-flowering types, as well as dwarf shrubs are available. Also grown in containers. All parts of plants are poisonous to humans and animals, including smoke if burned and water cut flowers are in. Even contact with leaves can irritate skin. Start by cuttings, which root in a glass of water, or buy plants in containers. Remove growing tips to promote branching. Prune after flowering to shape. Cut old growth close to the ground. Watch for yellow oleander aphids, mealy bugs and scale.
This tough plant, tolerant of poor soils and high salinity, is often planted along highways as a screen in the median strip. A wide selection of cultivars offer single to double flowers ranging from white to pink to red. Needs heat to bloom and thrive.
Attributes - Nerium oleander
Plant Type: Shrub
Bloom Season: Mid Spring through Early Fall
Flower Color: Pink, Red, White
Height: 8 ft. to 12 ft.
Width: 12 ft.
Sunlight: Full Sun
Climate: Zones 9, 10, 11
Notes: Thrives in Dry Climates, Hot Climates. Container Plants, Drought Tolerant, Long Blooming, Low Maintenance, Poisonous. Susceptible to Aphids, Mealybugs, Scales.
Nerium, Nerium oleander 'Hardy Pink', Nerium oleander 'Hardy Red'