Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’ – Natural form

Smoke tree

This large low maintenance deciduous shrub is adored for its plum-purple leaves, joined in summer by wispy plumes of blush pink flower panicles. Drought tolerant when established, it enjoys well drained soil in full sun and can eventually reach 3-4m.

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Origin: Southern Europe, Central and East Asia
Genus: Cotinus
Species / Cultivar: coggygria 'Royal Purple'
Common Name: Smoke tree

Plant Biography

Cotinus coggygria, known as the Smokebush or Eurasian Smoke Tree, is a deciduous shrub originating from Southern Europe and Asia. Its distinct fluffy inflorescences, resembling smoke, make it a favoured ornamental plant. Initially catalogued by Carl Linnaeus and named by Philip Miller, it holds historical significance for dye production from leaves and roots, offering hues for textiles. Ongoing botanical research refines its classification, yet its popularity endures in gardens worldwide due to its versatility and striking appearance.

Cotinus coggygria 'Royal Purple' - Natural form
Soil: Moist but Well Drained
Soil that allows water to drain at a moderate rate, without the water pooling.
Growth Rate: Medium
Expect to see moderate growth during growing season.
Water Requirement: Medium
Once it is established, this plant is likely to only require watering during drier periods.
Maintenance: Low
Minimal skill or input needed beyond the basics, a very independent plant.
Situation: Full Sun to Part Shade
Enjoys direct sun most of the day, but tolerant of fewer sunlit hours or light dappling.
Eventual Height: 4-8m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 4-8m
The plant's ultimate spread in typical growing conditions.
Hardiness: Hardy
Survives unprotected in an average winter. May need protection in extreme long frosts.
Habit: Deciduous
Sheds all its foliage annually, so for a period of the year it will be without foliage.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Optimal growth occurs in well-draining soil and full to partial sunlight. Balancing watering is crucial; although the plant tolerates dryness, consistent watering, especially in hotter or drier spells, benefits its health. Essential pruning should be done in early spring to remove dead or diseased branches and shape the shrub. Trim selectively for shaping, eliminating crossing or inward-growing branches, and consider post-flowering pruning in early summer for a more compact growth or potential second bloom.

Mulching around the base helps retain moisture and inhibit weed growth.


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