Garden Oracle / Drought and Heat Tolerant Gardening / Tucson - Phoenix - Arizona - California

Growing Eremophila maculata:
Spotted Emu Bush

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Form: Shrub.
Leaf retention: Evergreen.
Growth rate: Slow to moderate.
Mature Size: 2-4' (60-120cm) high and wide.
Flowers: Tubular, lower lip curled back, in red, pink, orange, yellow or white, with spots usually seen on the inside of the tube.
Bloom: Winter.
Fruit: Hard, woody, four-chambered nut with four seeds.
Leaves: Silvery green, oval-shaped. May acquire reddish tint in winter.
Stems: No thorns. New growth is reddish.
Wildlife: Attracts hummingbirds and birds.
Toxic / Danger: Leaves can be toxic to grazing livestock.
Origin: Australia.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 8b-10.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun to part shade. Part shade reduces blooms.
Water once established: Deep water once or twice a month.
Soil: Well drained, pH 5.6-8.5 (acidic to alkaline). This plant is saline tolerant.
Prune: After spring bloom. It flowers occur on the tips of the previous year's growth. Allowing it to grow "spiky" after a spring trimming provides the fullest bloom the following winter. It handles shearing well.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Cuttings. The seeds are difficult to germinate.
Uses: Ornamental, hummingbird garden.

This plant is a member of the Figwort family (Scrophulariaceae). Another common name is Valentine Bush for its tendency to be in full bloom on Valentine's Day. This species is highly variable in appearance.

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Eremophila maculata: Spotted Emu Bush - flowers

Eremophila maculata: Spotted Emu Bush

Latest update: December, 2023
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