Orange Flowering Tea Olive. Behind the selection 'Fodingzhu,' this is my next favorite fall flowering shrub. I can't believe how many gardeners have never seen this plant in flower. I have often taken specimens to rare plant auctions, and many times it demands the highest price of any plant in the auction. This variety will only flower in the fall, but when it does, it truly stops traffic. The bright tangerine colored flowers literally encircle its branches, and they give off the same intoxicating fragrance of the species. It does not start flowering until it reaches a height of 4' to 6', but when it attains flowering age, each year it blooms heavier and heavier. Normally there is only one flowering period a year, for us here about mid October, but as a plant ages, some years we have noticed two different flushes of blooms. One of its greatest assets is its cold-hardiness. I have seen a plant of this in Clemson, SC, endure - 80°F with barely a burnt leaf on it. Dr. Jim Berry of the University of Arkansas purchased several plants from us to test its cold hardiness around the state of Arkansas. He lost no plants in his most northern tests near Fayetteville. I also have a customer in New Jersey who has acclaimed to me on how well it has performed for him there. Give it full sun to part shade for best bloom. There are a number of clones of this variety on the market, but the one we sell is the one pictured in our photos. For information on growing Osmanthus outside of its hardiness zones, see Osmanthus (A guide for Growing Osmanthus in Containers) at the top of this page.
We do have larger sizes here at the nursery that are far too large to ship, but can be picked up here. We have a15 gallon size that will flower heavily in its first year.