Myrtle shrubs (Myrtus genus) are attractive evergreen plants with lovely small white flowers. Myrtles are low-maintenance shrubs as long as you grow them in the right conditions. In this article, I’ll run through where myrtle flowers grow, including their native range and ideal growing zones.
Where Do Myrtle Flowers Grow Natively?
Common myrtle shrubs (Myrtus communis) are the most widespread of the three species within the Myrtus genus. These evergreen plants are native to the Mediterranean and Southern Europe. Myrtle shrubs also grow in parts of Africa, Asia, and the Indian Subcontinent.
Myrtle shrubs prefer warm temperatures and mild winters. However, myrtle plants are fairly cold-hardy and can survive moderate exposure to frost during the winter. Myrtle shrubs are also fairly drought-tolerant.
What Are the Best Growing Zones for Myrtle Flowers?
Myrtle flowers grow best in USDA Zones 8 to 10. These areas provide warm temperatures for most of the year and experience fairly mild winters. Myrtle shrubs are surprisingly cold-hardy and can survive frosts and winter temperatures as low as 10ºF (-12ºC).
In colder climates, myrtles may need some protection from the winter elements. Myrtle shrubs will struggle if temperatures drop below freezing. Cold, strong winds can also damage myrtle plants, so they need a sheltered location.
How to Grow Myrtle Flowers
Once established, myrtle shrubs are low-maintenance. Myrtles are easy to care for if you meet their basic needs. In the right conditions, myrtle plants can live for decades, even centuries. Here are the main requirements for growing myrtle flowers:
Myrtle shrubs grow best in full sun or partial shade if sheltered from cold winds. Myrtles require around six hours of full sun every day in mild climates. In hot, dry areas, grow myrtles in partial shade to protect them from direct afternoon sunlight.
Myrtle shrubs require well-draining soils that can still hold a bit of moisture. Myrtle plants like to stay reasonably moist, although they are somewhat drought-tolerant. Myrtles prefer slightly acidic soils with pH levels between 5.0 and 6.5. Loamy or sandy soils are ideal, but clay also works as long as some grit or sand is added to improve drainage.
Water myrtle shrubs once every two weeks during the spring and summer. Established myrtle shrubs won’t need additional water if your area receives regular rainfall. Water newly planted myrtle shrubs once a week for the first couple of years. This allows the young plant to establish itself.
Fertilize established myrtle plants once a year during the spring, ideally with slow-release fertilizers. Newly planted myrtles should be fed monthly in their first growing season. The additional nutrients will help the shrub establish itself.
Prune myrtle shrubs after flowering finishes in the fall. Myrtles tolerate pruning well, allowing you to shape or train them as hedges. Remove any dead, diseased, or weak branches and thin out the inner branches to improve air circulation.
Can You Grow Myrtle Flowers in Pots?
Myrtle shrubs can be grown relatively easily in pots. In colder growing zones, this is the easiest way to grow myrtle plants. Choose a pot at least 12 inches wide with drainage holes. Myrtle shrubs grown in pots can still grow up to 8 feet tall and wide.
During the winter, protect potted myrtle plants by wrapping the container in horticultural fleece or some other insulating material. Alternatively, you can move them indoors or into a greenhouse to protect them from the cold.
Myrtle Growing Zones FAQs:
Where Are Myrtle Flowers Found?
Common myrtle flowers are found primarily in the Mediterranean and Southern Europe. Some myrtle species also grow in parts of Africa, Asia, and the Indian Subcontinent. Myrtles prefer warm climates but can survive well in winter.
Where Does Myrtle Grow Best?
Myrtle shrubs grow best in Zones 8 to 10, although they can survive winter temperatures as low as 10ºF. Myrtle shrubs require full sun or partial shade and need moist, well-draining soils.
What is Common Myrtle Good For?
Common myrtles make excellent ornamental shrubs for small gardens. Myrtles also make good hedging plants and can be easily trained via pruning. Myrtle flowers also attract pollinators, while the bluish-black berries provide winter food for birds.
Myrtle Growing Zones and Native Range: Wrapping Up
Myrtle shrubs are native to the Mediterranean and Southern Europe, as well as parts of Africa and Asia. Common myrtles thrive in warm climates with mild winters like those in Zones 8 to 10. However, myrtles are surprisingly cold-hardy and can survive winter temperatures as low as 10ºF.
Edd is a budding content writer and gardener living in the United Kingdom. He has a bachelor's degree in Creative and Professional Writing and has written for several gardening publications online. He is passionate about nature and sustainability with a focus on gardening and wildlife.