No doubt Cistus would be much more widely planted if they were just a little more reliably hardy, for they have many good qualities including evergreen foliage and tremendous flowering capacity in early and mid-summer There are no better shrubs for hot, dry places in reasonably good soil, but they are not really suitable for cold districts or poorly drained soils. The hardiest kinds are Cistus corbariensis, white, 2 to 3 ft. ; crispus, magenta, 2 ft.; cyprius, white blotched crimson, 6 ft.; ladaniferus, very large white flowers blotched with maroon in most forms but sometimes pure white, 4 to 5 ft.; laurifolius, white, 6 to 7 ft.; pulverulentus (Sunset), magenta, 2 to 3 ft., and Silver Pink, light pink, 2 ft. One of the most beautiful kinds is C. purpureus, deep rose, maroon blotched, 3 to 4 ft., but it is less hardy than those just listed.


Cistus do not transplant easily and so are best purchased in containers. They need little pruning, but frost-damaged stems should be cut out in spring. As a rule bushes are not long lived so replacements must be made from time to time.

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