Chinese Privet

Ligustrum lucidum

This tree is one of the best hardy evergreens. The photograph shows a particularly fine specimen by one of the entrances to the Wilderness reserve. It is known for its elegant shape and its attractive shiny leaf, which is curved, making it all the more attractive.

It was introduced from China in 1794 by the British Ambassador’s assistant, although it is also found in Korea and Japan.

The tree is not troubled by pests in this country and so always seems to have a vigorous healthy look. The oddest thing about it is the fact that wax insects used to be farmed on it and large quantities of wax taken off the leaves. This was then made into candles and also used to polish jade.