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The Distylium are evergreen shrubs of the Hamamelidaceae family native to Southeast Asia, especially China, which deserve to be better known. This genus includes 18 species, such as Dystilium racemosum and D. myricoides, and some horticultural hybrids among which the excellent 'Blue Cascade' is gradually finding its way into our gardens. Compact, resistant to diseases and insects, some Distylium are well adapted to dry shade, while others thrive in moist soil.

These trees and bushes have elliptical to ovate, bluish-green, evergreen leaves with entire margins, more or less coloured when they are young. The spring flowers grouped in small red panicles are quite discreet. The habit of these bushes varies depending on the species and varieties, as do their sizes, ranging from 1 m (3ft) to over 5 m (16ft) in height. An excellent alternative to traditional evergreen bushes such as boxwood, Distylium only fears excessively chalky soils. Hardiness varies depending on the species and varieties.

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