Waxflower Plant Types, How to Grow and Plant Care

You may have heard of the waxflower if you haven’t grown it, as it’s got a reputation for being the perfect plant for beginner gardeners. 

The phrase ‘beginner gardener’ is a bit of a misnomer, as gardening is essentially a huge experiment of trying new plants and different ways of growing them and caring for them. With gardening, you never stop learning.

The waxflower is a gorgeous flowering shrub, and comes from the Myrtle plant family. In some ways, you can almost treat it like a succulent, where the more you leave it alone, the better this plant will do. 

The waxflower, or Chamelaucium uncinatum, produces lovely blooms all the way from winter through spring. It’s a popular choice as this plant flowers during the barest times of year, when most plants are in their dormant state.

The flowers themselves come in a range of rich purples, oranges, pinks, and red. You can also recognize this plant by the tall, then stems which resemble needles.

To discover everything you need to know about the waxflower, keep reading.

At a Glance: Everything to Know about the Waxflower

The waxflower plant comes from Australia, though it thrives in a myriad of conditions. Though it’s native to such a hot climate, these plants are very resistant to frost.

This relative of the myrtle also flowers prolifically through the winter and spring. As a result, they are popular for ornamental gardens as well as in cut flower arrangements, and it can take as little as 3 weeks for the plant to bloom.

The flowers are also heavily scented, with a sweet fragrance.

Waxflower plants can grow to a maximum of 6 feet tall, and the common name comes from the waxy texture of the petals. 

How To Grow Waxflowers

Waxflowers are very easy plants to grow, and are perfect for people who don’t have a lot of time on their hands, but still want gorgeous blooms to add a sea of color and fragrance into their green space.

The Perfect Soil for Waxflowers

Like a lot of plants, waxflowers need soil which drains freely, as they will rot in standing water. They also benefit from an organic mulch or feed, which will result in more flowers being developed faster.

Sandy soil is perfect for this plant, as the waxflower has adapted over hundreds of years to grow along the Australian coasts.

Sunlight

It will probably come as no surprise that the waxflower thrives in a position of full sunlight. Anything less and the plant may suffer. 

Water Requirements

In a hot and dry climate, this plant will need regular watering, especially if the plant is young. Once it matures, the demand for water will be drastically reduced.

Otherwise, the plant will mainly take care of itself.

Varieties of Waxflower to Grow Yourself

The most common type of waxflower is Chamelaucium Uncinatum, or the Geraldton Wax. It’s widely grown as an ornamental plant, but that doesn’t mean it’s the only variety available.

Chamelaucium axillare ‘Esperance waxflower’

This waxflower produces its lovely white, pink, and red flowers between September and December in Australia, but should produce these flowers during the height of summer, depending on where you live.

The plant gets to a maximum of 7 feet tall, and the foliage itself is scented.  

Chamelaucium brevifolium

One of the smaller Chamelaucium varieties, this plant will reach a maximum height of 4 feet, and produces very fragrant white flowers.

Chamelaucium ciliatum

If you’d really like to grow a waxflower plant, but you have rocky soil in your garden, this is the perfect variety to go for. 

It will live happily in rocky or sandy soil, and will produce white blooms on a plant that can reach up to 4 feet high. 

Chamelaucium confertiflorum

Producing brilliant white flowers, this is the smallest variety, as it will grow to a maximum height of 3 feet tall. It also has the benefit of growing in peaty soil, as well as sandy soil. 

Chamelaucium drummondii

If you’d prefer your waxflowers with a little more color, drummondii is the variety for you. It produces white flowers, but the buds are pink. The height can range, with a maximum of 7 feet tall.

Chamelaucium megalopetalum ‘Large Waxflower’

No prizes for the identifying feature of this beauty. If you want large flowers, megalopetalum is the one to go for. This is also one of the longest-flowering varieties, blooming from May until December. 

Chamelaucium virgatum

Virgatum needs sandy soil to thrive, where it can get to a maximum height of 7 feet, producing pink and white flowers (see also Top 52 Amazing White Flowers You Can Grow in Your Garden). 

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Use Waxflowers

Decoratively, the possibilities are endless. You can use these blooms as cut flowers, as part of larger centerpieces, flower arrangements, or as corsages. 

All varieties produce fragrant blooms, making them suitable for pretty much anything you can think of.

Is the Waxflower Poisonous?

There’s no record of the waxflower being poisonous, but that doesn’t mean you should eat it.  It probably won’t be a pleasant experience!

Conclusion

While a previously unknown flowering shrub, the waxflower is making a name for itself as a prolific bloomer which is very hardy and easy to grow.

This has led to an explosion in popularity, and it’s grown as a lovely ornamental shrub all over the world. 

Both the smaller and larger varieties produce striking flowers with very little maintenance needed, and they produce much-needed color throughout winter.

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