Know About the Japanese Spindle Tree

Everything to Know About the Japanese Spindle Tree

Table of Contents

Also known as the Euonymus japonicus, the Japanese Spindle Tree proudly displays its origins from Japan, Korea, and parts of China. This evergreen shrub can also be classified as a small tree with glossy green leaves and interesting facts tied to it. 

Here's everything to know about the Euonymus japonicus:


• Japanese Spindle Tree: Defining Features 

1. Evergreen Foliage

Japanese Spindle Tree Foliage

The foliage of the Japanese Spindle is known to be evergreen and vibrant all year round. This shrub boasts shiny, glossy green foliage with oval leaves that are identifiably toothed. The leaves are so shiny, they almost look leathery!


2. Euonymus japonicus Varieties

There aren't way too many varieties of this Asian-origin tree but the ones that are well known include 'Microphyllus' (has smaller leaves), 'Aureo-marginatus' (has yellow-edged leaves), and 'Albomarginatus' (has white-edged leaves). 


3. Growth Habits

Typically reaching 6-15 feet in height, the Euonymus japonicus can grow as a shrub or a small tree. It all depends on the variety exactly how it is going to grow. 


4. Flowers and Fruits

Fruits and Flowers of Japanese Spindle Tree

The Japanese Euonymus grows relatively small, inconspicuous greenish-white flowers that typically bloom in late spring. The fruits, on the other hand, are bigger, brighter, and hold more ornamental value as compared to the unseeming flowers. 


5. Toxicity Levels

The Japanese Spindle tree is notorious for being toxic for humans and pets alike. All parts of this small tree are known to be poisonous and unfit for any kind of consumption.  


• Benefits of the Euonymus japonicus

1. Ornamental Value

Ornamental Value of Japanese Spindle Tree

With its lush, evergreen foliage and attractive varieties, the Japanese euonymus has the ability to effortlessly enhance garden aesthetics and keep your space looking vibrant and fresh, year-round. 


2. Versatility

This shrub can be used as a hedge or border plant, or as a standalone specimen. Its dense growth habit makes it an excellent choice for added privacy and for windbreaks.


3. Low Maintenance 

Variegated Foliage of Japanese Spindle Tree

As long as you give it bright, indirect light, the Japanese Spindle tree is easy to grow indoors as is relatively low maintenance, making it a great fit for busy and new gardeners alike. 


4. Pollinators Love the Japanese Spindle

The flowers, though small, attract bees and other pollinators, supporting local biodiversity.


• Euonymus japonicus Care

While low maintenance, this evergreen shrub still needs to be looked after well in order for it to thrive. Here's what you can do to help it:


1. Light Requirements 

As a somewhat outdoor plant, the Japanese Spindle Tree does best in full sun to partial shade. Indoors, it does well in bright, indirect sunlight and must be kept in a spot where it receives that kind of light for at least 6 hours a day. Without proper light, the variegated versions of this plant will lose their coloring in less light. 


2. Soil Preferences 

It prefers well-drained, fertile soil but is quite adaptable to various soil types, including clay and sandy soils.


3. Watering Requirements

Once established, this plant is majorly drought-tolerant. However, during the growing season, watering is crucial to establish a deep, extensive root system.


4. Pruning

This shrub does pretty well with pruning. So, you can prune it annually to maintain shape and encourage better, more dense growth. It can also be pruned more frequently if you're using it as a formal hedge.


5. Fertilization

In the early spring months, apply a balanced liquid fertilizer to provide balanced and all-round fertilization for the plant. If it is a potted plant indoors, you can also use our Plant Food Fertilizer Sticks to ensure a slow release of balanced nutrients every time you water the plant.


6.  Pest and Disease Management

Generally, this plant is pest-resistant but it can be susceptible to pests like scale insects and diseases like powdery mildew. Regular inspection and appropriate treatments can keep these in check, allowing you to find a solution faster if you do spot something on the foliage. You can also use Neem Oil spray to ensure prevention of the most commonly seen pests, ensuring a healthier plant.  

Buy Neem Oil Spray