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Ligustrum Japonicum (Recurvifolium) is a small tree or large shrub that grows to a height of 6 to 12 feet, but is capable of reaching 20 feet. It commonly displays multiple trunks in a curve shape which tend to form a spreading dense crown that tends to be asymmetrical and vase-shape. Alongside it shows off a smooth, gray-brown bark. The plant is naturalized in the USA.
Also, leaves are evergreen, dark green, simple, entire, opposite, and rounded (hence the popular name recurvifolium). In addition, the leaves have a sharp terminal point and are 2 to 4 inches long. Finally, the flowers are white to gray, showy, and borne on upright terminal clusters that are 5 to 8 inches long. Also, the blooms are small, about 1/5 inch across, and scented. While the flower clusters resemble those of the lilac.
Furthermore, the fruits are small, green ripening to black, oval, fleshy berries under 1/2 inch in diameter. Birds eat the fruits; seeds are used for propagation. In east Asia, the fruit is used as a herbal medicine. Ligustrum Japonicum (Recurvifolium) is a hardy plant, tolerant of a range of well-drained soils, and responds well to pruning.
In landscaping, it has several applications. It can be formed into a dense hedge, grown as a specimen or accent shrub or tree in a garden or on a patio, in a civic center, as well as in a large planter and can be grown as a bonsai or for topiary display. Recurvifolium is a dwarf selection of Japanese ligustrum; there are numerous other varieties available.