Over the winter, the cold intensifies the colours on leucothoe enhancing the copper colour of its evergreen foliage. It keeps this colour over the winter into the spring when it brightens with the new red shoots that last through the summer.
Leucothoe ‘Scarletta’ is an excellent variety, which can be used very well to suppress weeds. It can produce small white flowers in late spring although these are often missed. It is also a perfect plant for using in a winter planter before moving it into the garden, in this situation it acts as a backdrop to your colourful winter bedding such as mini-cyclamen and pansies.
Leucothoes are very easy to grow, and will grow in most conditions from full sun to heavy shade and well drained to moist soil, but not waterlogged. It will benefit from an occasional acid feed. It is also tolerant of more extreme conditions such as strong winds. It can grow to about 100cm although most people keep it trimmed to half this size allowing it to spread.
Leucothoes can be planted with conifers where the dark red contrasts well with the golden colours of Thuja ‘Goldy’ or aurea nana, or surrounded by winter bedding such as violas and pansies. Plant it near Sarcococca confusa (Christmas box) so that over the winter you have the beautiful scent from the Sarcococca together with these attractive red leaves.
|Leucothoe 'Curly Red'||Leucothoe 'Rainbow'||Leucothoe 'Royal Ruby'|