Elaeagnus ebbingei (= E. submacrophylla)
(wild varieties: warm-temperate Japan)
Habit: Small shrub, 1-2 m tall, 1-2 m wide, even larger in favourable areas, bushy and extended, twigs arching, fast-growing.
Flowers: A tough plant with autumn flowers, cream-white, tube-shaped flower bells usually hidden by the foliage, September to November, also flowering through winter in temperate areas; exceptionally strong sweet scent.
Fruits: Only rarely, occasionally ovoid, fleshy, juicy stone fruits in temperate locations, pale orange or silvery brown; edible, sweetish to tasteless, slightly aromatic.
Leaves: Semi-evergreen, sometimes evergreen, dense foliage, broadly elliptical, wavy, both sides silvery during shooting, later pale or shiny green on top, silvery underneath, thus conspicuously two-toned.
Demands: Only sunny in mild areas, otherwise lightly shady to semi-shady; tolerates heat, needs warmth, not very frost hardy, enjoys sheltered locations; good for urban and industrial areas, tolerates salty air.
Soil: Dry to fresh; moderately acidic to alkaline; in all well drained substrates, always freezing back in heavy soil, tolerates some salt.
Native habitat: The Japanese Elaeagnus species prefer the protection of pines such as Pinus densiflora or Pinus parviflora and the Japanese Black Pines. The dark ambience is brightened up by Hydrangea paniculata, Ilex crenata and above all by various rose species such as Rosa multiflora.
Hardiness: Zone 7a