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Plant Collection > Vitex agnus castus
Lilac Chaste Tree (Vitex Agnus castus)

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Chastetree is a fast growing small tree or tender shrub native to southern Europe and western Asia. Its wispy, narrowly palmate, graygreen leaves are aromatic if crushed. The small fragrant lavender blue flowers appear at the branch tips from late spring or early summer into autumn. The palmate (hand-shaped), gray-green leaves with silvery undersides are fragrant when bruised. Place chastetree in a sunny location with well drained soil. It thrives in heat and blooms on new, current season growth. In warm regions, the plant can be limbed up into a small, multitrunked tree, grown in a patio container, or placed in the mixed flower border. In cooler zones, the plant will be knocked back by frosts and should be pruned back and allowed to rejuvenate from the base each spring. In these areas, chastetree is a modest sized perennial shrub. This plant spreads by self-sowing and may be invasive in warm climates.

Genus - Vitex Species - Agnus castus Common name - Lilac Chaste Tree Germination rate - 80% Pre-Treatment - Required Plant type - Shrub Vegetation type - Deciduous Hardiness zones - 6 - 9 Exposure - Full Sun, Partial Sun Height - 5'-25' / 1.50 - 7.50 m Spread - 8'-20' / 2.40 - 6 m Growth rate - Fast Bloom season - Summer, Late Summer, Early Fall Leaf / Flower color - Green, Gray Green / Violet, Lavender Soil PH - Neutral Soil type - Clay, Loam, Sand, Well Drained Water requirements - Drought Tolerant, Average Water Landscape uses - Container, Feature Plant, Foundation, Hedges, Mixed Border, Screening / Wind Break

GERMINATION INSTRUCTIONS : 1. Soak in warm water for 24 hours. 2. Cold/moist stratify for 90 days in moist vermiculite or sterile soil. 3. Sow vitex seeds indoors in a seed tray prepared with a layer of growing medium. Ideally, the medium should contain a combination of peat, perlite, and vermiculite. The seeds do not need direct sunlight to sprout, but they do require warmth. Be sure to keep the seeds away from drafts for 10 to 14 days. 4. Cover the seed tray with a layer of plastic wrap. The idea here is to maintain a moist environment, but be careful. The minute you notice sprouting beginning to occur, remove the plastic immediately. Otherwise, your tender seedlings may succumb to a form of fungal infection known as damp off. -Place the newly sprouted seedlings in an area free of drafts where they will receive several hours of sunlight each day. If this is not possible, then you'll need to provide artificial light with plant lights, which can be found in garden supply centers. -Thin out the sprouted seedlings from the seed tray after 3 to 4 weeks. Those that have reached 1 to 2 inches in height may be transferred into individual pots to mature before transplanting your new vitex plants into the garden.

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