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Sunshine Ligustrum

85 Reviews
| 2 answered questions
$19.98
  • Vibrant golden-yellow, evergreen foliage
  • Matures to 3-4' wide by 3-6' tall
  • Hardy in USDA Zones 6 - 10
  • Plant in full sun
  • Cannot Ship to TN
Pot size

Description

The new Sunshine Ligustrum (Ligustrum sinense 'Sunshine' PP20379) from the Southern Living Plant Collection completely reinvents the traditional Privet! It's coveted for its vibrant golden-yellow, evergreen foliage. This is a true landscaping treasure, and once you know it, you'll recognize it wherever you see it. New growth emerges as a delicate lime green, which does a phenomenal job of awakening the landscape from its winter slumber. This foliage will continuously intensify as spring turns into summer, at which point they will be a gleaming shade of gold. The more sunlight they get, the better. More sun produces more yellow leaves, while less sun results in more yellow-green foliage.

This Ligustrum proves itself to be incredibly versatile. Its compact and upright form makes for a tremendous natural hedge, no pruning required! At maturity, it reaches only 3-4' wide by 3-6' tall.

Consequently, it also lends itself to trimming, if that's more your speed. Shape this beauty into uniform hedges or small topiaries.

Furthermore, the Sunshine's petite, oval leaves are perfect for shaping into hard edges. Try a mass planting for a truly impressive display.

Besides being a true beauty, this shrub is drought and heat tolerant, as well as deer resistant. In ideal conditions, it lives up to 30 years!

Sunshine Ligustrum Care

Hardy from USDA Zones 6-10. Therefore, once fully established, it's capable of withstanding temperatures between -5° and -10° F.

Plant this variety in Full Sun, with 6+ hours being preferable.

Ensure that your plant has well-draining soil. Ligustrum are particularly susceptible to root rot from standing water. Water new plantings 2-3 times per week for the first growing season to help them establish deep root systems.

Fertilize with a slow-release, balanced fertilizer yearly in spring. Alternatively, use a balanced organic fertilizer coupled with a layer of compost to get your plants off on the right foot.

Winter Care

  • We recommend providing overnight coverage during hard freezes for the first growing season. In future winters, it will be more prepared to deal with the cold weather in your area.
    • Cover it with a freeze cloth, blanket, or tarp overnight when temperatures are most extreme and there is no sun to warm the plant. Remove the cover in the morning. If you're going to have multiple days of sub-freezing temperatures, just leave the cover on the ground in front of or next to your plant and place it back over the plant the next night.
  • Some leaf drop may occur in winter, however, new growth will replace it in spring.
  • If you're planning on pruning/trimming your plant, wait until the threat of frost has passed in spring.

Popular Companion Plants

  • Sunshine contrasts with other plants very easily. Therefore, it's simple to put together a fantastic display with it. Try it with the Purple Diamond Loropetalum. Both of these varieties have characteristically bold foliage that will really POP when planted together. Otherwise, plant it with an Oakland Holly Tree. The Oakland's statuesque growth provides a reliable and attractive accent.
  • It also looks great when paired nearly all Encore Azaleas. The Autumn Fire Encore Azalea, in particular, is a dynamite companion. It has dark foliage and bold red blooms that contrasts beautifully with the petite yellow leaves.

Still need some inspiration? Check out this Southern Living Plant Collection Garden Project featuring the Orange Rocket Barberry.

Frequently Asked Questions

"Is the Sunshine Ligustrum Invasive?"

No! This plant is sterile. Therefore, it won't flower or reproduce in your landscape. This is also good news for allergy sufferers that normally fall victim to ligustrum pollen.

"If it isn't invasive like other Privet/Ligustrum, can it be shipped to Tennessee?"

Unfortunately, no. Although this plant isn't invasive, it is still not legal for it to be shipped to Tennessee.

"Is Sunshine Ligustrum Deer Resistant?"

Sort of. It's certainly not a deer's preferred meal, however, it isn't deer-proof. If a starving deer comes through your yard, it may still decide to munch on your Sunshine. Very few plants are genuinely safe from a particularly hungry deer. Boxwoods are one of the few exceptions, as deer tend to find them repulsive.

"Why is my plant more lime-green than yellow?"

New, fresh growth tends to be more lime-green before maturing to yellow, so this could be the issue. However, if the growth isn't new, oftentimes it's because your plant isn't getting enough sun. Try to provide at least 4 hours of direct sunlight. All-day filtered sun can work as well if the sunlight is very lightly filtered.

"One part of my plant is growing dark green."

This is rare but it does happen from time to time. This plant was selectively cultivated from the traditional Ligustrum sinense to have the gorgeous color and compact growth habit that it's known for. However, since it still has the original plants genetics in it, every once in a while, a branch may start to exhibit the traditional dark green color. If this happens, it's easily fixed. Simply snip the green branch at its base, where it meets up with the correct yellow-leafed stems. The plant will fill in around it with the correct growth.

Care & Use

Getting Started: Understanding Your New Plant

Review your plant's information on our website or the tag that comes with it. Be mindful of sunlight preferences, soil type, and spacing needs.

Our plants are adaptable but grow best in the correct USDA Zones. Click here to learn more about your USDA Zone.

Planting Instructions

Dig a Hole

First, dig a hole three times the width of the root ball of your plant. This makes it easier for the root system to spread out quickly. Dig the hole deep enough that your plant will sit level with or slightly above the ground around it.

Amend Your Soil

Mix your native soil with rich gardening soil to provide extra nutrients and support plant growth. If your soil is clay-heavy, we recommend mixing your native clay soil with equal parts of Pine Bark mulch to improve drainage and the overall breathability of your soil.

Place Your Plant

Examine the roots. If they appear tightly bound, gently coax them apart; this ensures they can spread into the new soil. Place your plant in the hole so the top of the rootball is even with the surrounding soil—Backfill around it with the amended soil mixture. The roots need access to oxygen for your plant to thrive, so do not cover the rootball; place soil around it.

Mulch Your Plants

Top the soil beneath your plant with 3-4 inches of mulch to help it retain moisture. Be careful not to cover the rootball - your new plants roots need access to oxygen.

Water Your Plant

Soak the plant with a hose afterward to hydrate the plant, as well as get the soil and mulch situated. Develop a regular watering schedule based on your plant's needs and local weather patterns. Remember, over watering is just as, if not more, harmful than under watering.

Spacing Recommendations

Spacing Recommendations

Plant 2 to 2.5 feet apart for a seamless planting. For space between each plant, plant 4+ feet apart.

  • Scientific Name
    Ligustrum sinense 'Sunshine' PP20379
  • Hardiness Zone
    6, 7, 8, 9, 10
  • Sun Exposure
    Full Sun
  • Evergreen or Deciduous
    Evergreen
  • Features
    Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant, Dwarf, Fast Growth, Sun Loving, Winter / Fall Foliage Color
  • Feature Color
    Green, Yellow
  • Uses
    Accent, Border, Container, Hedge, Mass Planting
  • Water Needs
    Medium
  • Bloom Season
    None

Growing Zones : 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10

Map of USDA Zones 6-10
Southern Living Plant Collection Nandinas planted in a container with heucherella in front of a fireplace

Southern Living Plants

A collection of shrubs, trees, and perennials selected by plant experts to thrive in the heat of the South. Find traditional varieties like camellias mixed with new landscape favorites like agapanthus. These varieties have been bred to tackle landscape challenges specific to the region.

Sunshine Ligustrum with soft green and yellow foliage.
Southern Living Plant Collection

Sunshine Ligustrum

From $19.98

The new Sunshine Ligustrum (Ligustrum sinense 'Sunshine' PP20379) from the Southern Living Plant Collection completely reinvents the traditional Privet! It's coveted for its vibrant golden-yellow, evergreen foliage. This is a true landscaping treasure, and once you know it, you'll recognize it wherever you see it. New growth emerges as a delicate lime green, which does a phenomenal job of awakening the landscape from its winter slumber. This foliage will continuously intensify as spring turns into summer, at which point they will be a gleaming shade of gold. The more sunlight they get, the better. More sun produces more yellow leaves, while less sun results in more yellow-green foliage.

This Ligustrum proves itself to be incredibly versatile. Its compact and upright form makes for a tremendous natural hedge, no pruning required! At maturity, it reaches only 3-4' wide by 3-6' tall.

Consequently, it also lends itself to trimming, if that's more your speed. Shape this beauty into uniform hedges or small topiaries.

Furthermore, the Sunshine's petite, oval leaves are perfect for shaping into hard edges. Try a mass planting for a truly impressive display.

Besides being a true beauty, this shrub is drought and heat tolerant, as well as deer resistant. In ideal conditions, it lives up to 30 years!

Sunshine Ligustrum Care

Hardy from USDA Zones 6-10. Therefore, once fully established, it's capable of withstanding temperatures between -5° and -10° F.

Plant this variety in Full Sun, with 6+ hours being preferable.

Ensure that your plant has well-draining soil. Ligustrum are particularly susceptible to root rot from standing water. Water new plantings 2-3 times per week for the first growing season to help them establish deep root systems.

Fertilize with a slow-release, balanced fertilizer yearly in spring. Alternatively, use a balanced organic fertilizer coupled with a layer of compost to get your plants off on the right foot.

Winter Care

Popular Companion Plants

Still need some inspiration? Check out this Southern Living Plant Collection Garden Project featuring the Orange Rocket Barberry.

Frequently Asked Questions

"Is the Sunshine Ligustrum Invasive?"

No! This plant is sterile. Therefore, it won't flower or reproduce in your landscape. This is also good news for allergy sufferers that normally fall victim to ligustrum pollen.

"If it isn't invasive like other Privet/Ligustrum, can it be shipped to Tennessee?"

Unfortunately, no. Although this plant isn't invasive, it is still not legal for it to be shipped to Tennessee.

"Is Sunshine Ligustrum Deer Resistant?"

Sort of. It's certainly not a deer's preferred meal, however, it isn't deer-proof. If a starving deer comes through your yard, it may still decide to munch on your Sunshine. Very few plants are genuinely safe from a particularly hungry deer. Boxwoods are one of the few exceptions, as deer tend to find them repulsive.

"Why is my plant more lime-green than yellow?"

New, fresh growth tends to be more lime-green before maturing to yellow, so this could be the issue. However, if the growth isn't new, oftentimes it's because your plant isn't getting enough sun. Try to provide at least 4 hours of direct sunlight. All-day filtered sun can work as well if the sunlight is very lightly filtered.

"One part of my plant is growing dark green."

This is rare but it does happen from time to time. This plant was selectively cultivated from the traditional Ligustrum sinense to have the gorgeous color and compact growth habit that it's known for. However, since it still has the original plants genetics in it, every once in a while, a branch may start to exhibit the traditional dark green color. If this happens, it's easily fixed. Simply snip the green branch at its base, where it meets up with the correct yellow-leafed stems. The plant will fill in around it with the correct growth.

Pot size

  • 2.5 Quart
  • 2 Gallon
  • 3 Gallon
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