Myrtus communis

Common myrtles, also known as true myrtles, are evergreen shrubs native to the Mediterranean region. They want full sun and are relatively low-maintenance and drought tolerant once established. The edible blue-black berries are commonly used to flavor pork and sausages as well as to produce a liqueur called mirto rosso. Myrtles have been used medicinally since before 2500 BCE and have been included in many rituals and mythologies of the peoples and civilizations close to the Mediterranean Sea. Queen Victoria of England was especially fond of myrtles and since her reign they have been traditional in wedding bouquets in many European cultures. Much like sweet bay leaf, leaves or sprigs of myrtles can be used to flavor stews or stuffing and then discarded once the dish is served. 

Requirements: Full sun and well-draining soil. Very drought tolerant once established.

Height: to 3 ft.   Spread: to 3 ft.

Myrtus communis 'Andy's Hardy'

An especially cold hardy selection (down to 5 F) when fully grown. We brought this plant back from Asheville, North Carolina as an unnamed form many years ago and planted it in our lavender field where it withstood many cold winters after which it was named by a few local plantsmen who were impressed with its exceptional hardiness. 

Myrtus communis 'Compacta'

Neat, compact foliage with a smaller leaf than the species. Performs well in containers.

Myrtus communis 'Compacta Variegata'

Neat, compact variegated foliage. Performs well in containers.

Myrtus communis 'Variegata'

Variegated foliage.