Syzygium ‘Cascade’

Lilly Pilly

Family: Myrtaceae

A shrub to about 4 metres tall by a few metres wide

It is a cultivated hybrid between Syzygium luehmannii (a NSW/Qld species) and Syzygium wilsonii (a northern Queensland species).

Syzygium spp. have simple and oppoiste leaves. In this cultivar, the leaves are glossy-green, with the lower surface much paler, ranging from lanceolate to elliptic, to about 10 cm long and 3 cm wide, with a long pointy (acuminate) tip. The large oil glands can be seen with a hand lens. New growth can be a nice bronze-pink colour.

Syzygium produce 5-merous staminate flowers in panicle-like inflorescences, terminal or axillary on either younger or older wood. In this culitvar, the flowers are produced in panicle-like clusters in the upper leaf axils and terminals and are quite conspicuous.

The staminate flowers pink in colour, which is the main attractant for this plant (the two parent species above have cream and pink-red flowers respectively), and are produced in large numbers, about 10 mm across long with stamens 15 mm long, creating a “fluffy” flowering effect.

The fruit of Syzygium is a succulent structure – closely resembling a berry or a drupe. Sometimes there is one seed (drupe) and sometimes more (berry).

In this cultivated hybrid, fruits are produced, and are pink in colour, about 2 cm in diameter.

In the garden

A very hardy shrub with an attractive canopy and overall form. It has an attractive canopy that lends to rainforest themes and shady gardens. Also, a great specimen tree in a lawn. It is a popular cultivar due to the pink flowers.

Only grows to 4 m and is slow growing.

Drought tolerant once established. Full sun to part shade.

Prune to encourage a desired shape and denser foliage. They can get leggy with gaps in the foliage if not pruned.

Attractive to birds. Likes a well-drained soil with some enrichment.

Flowers and fruits more prolifically after pruning.

It also has pink-bronze to reddish new growth which is attractive for much of the year.

This cultivar is considered to be resistant to heavy psyllid attack. It can suffer from scale.


Propagation from seed or soft-wood cuttings.

Other information

Syzygium is a large genus of over 1000 species (placing it in the Top-20 most diverse genera of the world); found in Africa, Asia, the wider Pacific and Australia. Australia has about 52 species, 47 species of which are endemic, occurring in New South Wales, Queensland, Northern Territory and Western Australia. NSW currently has 9 species. 1 species is endemic to Lord Howe Island.

Syzygium – from the Greek syzygos (σύζυγος) or syzygy (σύζυγi) which means “husband” or “wife” or “spouse”, basically referring to “joined”. It reportedly may refer to some species having leaf bases joined together (as in some Caribbean species); a trait it seems doesn’t really apply to Australian species. Or, may apply to the consistent paired opposite leaves and/or branching pattern.

‘Cascade’ – is the registered cultivar name. It may refer to the arching-weeping foliage.

Gardening with Angus – Syzygium ‘Cascade’ profile page https://www.gardeningwithangus.com.au/syzygium-cascade-lilly-pilly/

Alpine Nurseries – Syzygium ‘Cascade’ profile page                  https://www.alpinenurseries.com.au/plant-library/syzygium-cascade/

By Dan Clarke