Eremophila ‘Summertime Blue’ will reach a height of 2 metres with a similar spread. It tends to have a rounded weeping habit.
It is a naturally occurring hybrid whose parents are Eremophila divaricata and Eremophila polyclada. The hybrid originated in northwest Victoria on the floodplains of the Murray River.
Eremophila spp. mostly have simple and alternate leaves (sometimes opposite or whorled). In this cultivar, the leaves are narrow and light green, somewhat rigid and linear-elliptic, to about 20 mm long by only 2 mm wide; green in color.
Eremophila spp. have 5-merous flowers with the 5 petals usually fused into a tube (tubulate to campanulate) with 5 petal-lobes (often described as 2-lipped with 3 upper lobes and 2 lower), occurring in small-numbered clusters per leaf axil. Flowers are often curved. In this cultivar, large, tubular flowers are pale lilac tinged with a deeper lilac, with flowers to about 30 mm long by 15 mm wide, produced solitarily in leaf axils. Summer is the main flowering period with sporadic flowering at other times. The blooms are rich in nectar and attract honeyeaters.
This attractive hybrid prefers to grow in full sun but will tolerate filtered shade. ‘Summertime Blue’ once established, will survive and thrive without watering. The specimens, in our cold climate garden (near Armidale), cope well with frosts. Plant on a well-drained soil which can range from sand to clay-based.
Pruning, after the summer flowering extravaganza, is beneficial.
All cultivars must be propagated from cuttings to maintain ‘true-to-type’ forms.
Eremophila can regenerate from the seedbank after fire with some plants able to reshoot from stem buds as well as sucker from basal areas.
Eremophila is a substantial Australian genus of around 220 species with, likely, many undescribed species. Most species are found in Western Australia and other Australian arid zones. They occur in all states except Tasmania. NSW currently has 21 species with some subspecies taxa.
See our 2023 study group article on this genus: https://resources.austplants.com.au/stories/why-do-eremophila-have-resin/
Eremophila – from Greek Erimos (ερημος) meaning “desert” and –philos (φίλος) referring to “friend” or “beloved” – referring to the mostly desert habitats of these plants.
‘Summertime Blue’ – named for the flowering period.
Botanic Gardens of South Australia – Plant Selector – Eremophila ‘Summertime Blue’ profile page http://plantselector.botanicgardens.sa.gov.au/Plants/Details/2971