Chionanthus virginicus 'Groenendaal'

The motherplant of this selection grows at Herkenrode. Philippe de Spoelberch raised it from seed taken in 1972 from a large plant in the Fruticetum at Groenendaal Arboretum (Hoeilaart, Belgium). The plant got its name ‘Groenendaal’ in 1994 because of its good shape and outstanding flowering. Now, at the age of 45, it is a low branching quasi multistemmed compact very floriferous shrub  of 5 m high and 5 m wide.  End of May, beginning of June it flowers with lax fluffy panicles of male flowers: starting yellow green, evolving to pure white and slightly fragrant.  In autumn it stands out with its warm yellow to golden coloured leaves. It was Jelena De Belder (founder of Arboretum Kalmthout, Belgium) who pointed out that this is a superior form: most specimens of Chionanthus virginicus are leggy and have an untidy habit.

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