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 Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK 
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Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 8:33 pm
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Location: Heswall, Wirral, UK (Zone 9a)
Post Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
I thought i'd share this with you all.. I love this species as it ticks all the boxes and looks good in this sheltered outdoor area all year around. One of my favourite plants.. i originally brought it at a houseplant centre within a garden centre and I just had to take it.. that was about 3 years ago

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Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:01 pm
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 3:59 pm
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Location: Loughborough, Leics, central UK
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
Interesting Stephen how does it take the frost does it defoliate.
I ask as my sister has just bought me one back from Cornwall.
Do you grow Oleander if so how comparable to this is this Tibouchina?


Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:58 pm
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Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 8:33 pm
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Location: Heswall, Wirral, UK (Zone 9a)
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
It hasn't defoliated yet, but it is extremely sheltered, in between two walls, frost rarely catches it as it has partial overhead cover, but snow, rain and cold winds can.. nevertheless it seems ok. I think very sheltered is the key to it really. Outdoors without any shelter/in exosure this would probably go downhill even in relatively mild situations.. I think Oleander is much hardier.


Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:04 pm
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 1:42 pm
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Location: Cornwall
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
Experience here is that if it loses top growth due to cold it will happily regrow in spring but won't reach flowering before winter so you either have to find that perfect spot that keeps the stems alive through winter or plunge out new plants each year.
One of my favourite things too, looks like this year T. grandifolia will get to flower before I have to bring it in for the winter

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Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:05 am
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 3:59 pm
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Location: Loughborough, Leics, central UK
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
Thanks for the info guys T.grandifolia is a cracking plant I. always remember the large one outside the caves in Madeira.
Charlie do you or can you grow Oleander I just wondered how it compares?.


Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:50 pm
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 1:42 pm
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Location: Cornwall
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
I grow one but have never bothered trying it outside so I don't know. Tibouchina is very sensitive to cold and a plus 2 or 3 is normally enough to defoliate it, bit of warm house wall is the way to go! Fortunately they are easy and quick from cuttings :)

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Sat Sep 30, 2017 8:18 am
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Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 5:52 pm
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Location: Hayward- S.F. Bay area Ca.
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
They dont need a hot summer to thrive. They are happy in foggy SF. They tend to grow viney and shrubs can fall over. But,I've been tempted to try one. At this point in my life looks nice for a plant,trumps ( booooo) simple rarity.
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Sat Sep 30, 2017 11:48 pm
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Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 8:33 pm
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Location: Heswall, Wirral, UK (Zone 9a)
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
charliepridham wrote:
I grow one but have never bothered trying it outside so I don't know. Tibouchina is very sensitive to cold and a plus 2 or 3 is normally enough to defoliate it, bit of warm house wall is the way to go! Fortunately they are easy and quick from cuttings :)


I think it's the age old (but not necessarily obvious) story that mollycoddling stuff tends to have a detrimental effect. Certainly I just left this one to get on with it, it gets no special treatment, the wall it's against is just a retaining wall not connected to a building, so doesn't really provide a huge amount of heat. I think the lowest it got in that position is -1C.. it's been ok but I'm not going to fleece it, it'll just have to figure out how to survive (which it has done well so far)


Sun Oct 08, 2017 8:42 pm
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Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
I grew Tibouchina urvilleana here outdoors for three years. It managed milder winters, under evergreen canopy, down to a brief overnight -3ºC, but it declined gradually and the first sustained hard freeze killed it. If it's hardened off, it will certainly survive light frosts and return to flower again the following year, as large specimens in colder parts of the Bay Area will testify.

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Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:41 pm
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 1:42 pm
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Location: Cornwall
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
The following two pictures show the story here both taken yesterday

First this plant, planted on a west facing wall in 2004, as you can see its still alive and well but since its first year no sign of flowers, dies to the ground each winter. bit pointless but I live in hope!

ImageTibouchina urvilleana 083 by charliepridham, on Flickr

In contrast to this plant which was a cutting taken in 2016 and planted out in spring this year

ImageTibouchina urvilleana 080 by charliepridham, on Flickr

If you are near the coast or in an urban heat island then its likely you will have better luck with permanent planting, for me I have had to accept that if I want flowers they need to over winter frost free.

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Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:00 am
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Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 8:33 pm
Posts: 329
Location: Heswall, Wirral, UK (Zone 9a)
Post Re: Tibouchina urvilleana in shelter UK
It's one of those knife edge plants.. either it'll grow extremely well, as it does for me, because of some shelter, or it fails and dies at the first sniff of frost. Mine manages to flower year round almost, even in the cold weather, so shelter is the way forward. I also used to grow Justicia rizzinii under this area, which is from the same area.. it also did very well.

I was first alerted to the possibilities of this plant by someone local who grew Tibouchina outside all year round with some leaf loss occasionally. I'm glad I took the risk too now.


Tue Oct 31, 2017 9:04 pm
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