Pittosporum illicioides

Common Name: pittosporum 
Type: Deciduous shrub
Family: Pittosporaceae
Native Range: Southern China, Japan, Taiwan
Zone: 8 to 11
Height: 12.00 to 15.00 feet
Spread: 10.00 to 12.00 feet
Bloom Time: March to May
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium
Suggested Use: Hedge
Flower: Showy
Leaf: Evergreen
Other: Winter Interest
Tolerate: Drought


Winter hardy to USDA Zone 8-11 where it is best grown in average, slightly acidic, moderately fertile, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. Established plants have some drought tolerance.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Pittosporum illicioides, commonly known as pittosporum, is an upright, evergreen shrub which grows to 12-15' tall. It is native to forests, thickets, valleys, and along streams in southeastern China, Taiwan and Japan. Leaves (each 2-7” long) appear at the branch apices in whorl-like clusters of 3-6. Each leaf is pale green abaxially (side away from the axis) and dark green adaxially (side towards the axis). White flowers bloom March to May in terminal, umbellate, 2-10 flowered inflorescences. Fruit matures to blue-black in fall.

Genus name comes from the Greek words pitta meaning pitch and spora meaning seed in reference to the sticky resinous coating on the seed.


No serious insect or disease problems.


Where winter hardy, grow as a specimen or in small groups in foundations, borders, or other sunny areas of the landscape. May be grown as a screen or hedge. Where not winter hardy, plants may be grown in containers that are overwintered in greenhouses or sunrooms.