PO Box 567
Lilydale, Vic 3140
Phone (03) 9735 3831
Cistus are closely related to the genus Halimium, indeed there is even an intergeneric hybrid called Halmiocistus. They are evergreen shrubs native to the countries that ring the Mediterranean. They are generally found in stony, arid scrublands and sandy soil types, particularly in disturbed sites. In hot dry conditions they may drop their leaves but in cultivation this is uncommon. They are tough plants that flower freely and will tolerate extended dry periods. The flowers have showy five petals that are like ruffled crepe and usually fall within a few hours of opening. The plants flower repeatedly with the old petals forming an attractive carpet on the ground beneath.
There are 20 species with numerous hybrids and cultivars. Cistus x hybridus is one of the hardiest of all Cistus. It will grow in full sun to part shade and is tolerant of most frosts. Growing between 60cm and 100cm tall and up 1.2m wide, it is an attractive hybrid that produces masses of pure white flowers in spring and summer. The foliage takes on a soft bronze tone in winter and like all members of the Cistaceae family it requires full sun, good drainage and a light prune after flowering. They do not like a hard prune or transplanting. Feed with Osmocote slow release after flowering.
Plant with Eumorpha prostrata and Rosmarinus ‘Shimmering Stars’ for a low groing garden with year round flowers or as aborder plant to a mass planting of assorted Penstemon and Lavandula. Cistus x hybridus’ is just one in the Sunlover TM collection of Cistus and related plants.