How to grow Plants Fried Egg Tree, Gordonia

Fried Egg Tree, Gordonia

It's autumn and the Gordonia are easy to spot! Photo - Linda Ross

Fried Egg Tree, Gordonia axillaris

This tree gets its common name from the spectacular autumn show of white petalled, yellow-centred flowers. It’s a handsome evergreen shrub with a rounded crown and camellia-like leaves. 

Description: The flowers of ‘Fried Egg Plant’ have a similar appearance to those of Camellia. They flower at the same time of year, over autumn and into winter which makes it easy to confuse them. A small tree or large shrub at maturity, Gordonia is commonly found to have a height and width of 5m, with a large dome shaped canopy. It has decorative bark, glossy deep green leaves and white single flowers that display a large cluster of yellow stamens in the middle of each bloom. Flowers fall to resemble a carpet of fried eggs.

Care: Ensure the plant is well watered during dry periods. Mulch thickly, away from the trunk and out to the drip line. Feed in early spring and again in early autumn with a high potassium fertiliser for flowering plants. Gordonia rarely needs pruning.

Use: Perfect as a single feature tree to complement Camellias. The ideal sized tree for small gardens or streetscapes. Gordonia makes a solid screening plant, or focal point. It is pest, disease and trouble-free. Trees reach 3-5m. Prune lower branches if you plan to walk (or drive) underneath it.


Text: Linda Ross


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Author: Linda Ross

Garden Clinic TV