Snowcone Japanese Snowbell
Styrax japonicus ‘JFS-D’
If you were ever impressed with the Japanese Snowbell, you will be raving about the Snowcone Japanese Snowbell, Styrax japonicus ‘Snowcone’. I have always considered one of the nemeses of the snowbell to be the annual twig dieback. In the spring, the trees were always full of dead twigs and you wondered if it would ever be presentable. Fortunately, the tree eventually would overcome the shaggy look and be impressive by late summer. But the species then would drop leaves early to expose all that twiggy growth, dead and alive.
Another concern was its somewhat irregular form, unless of course you wanted a trunk with ‘character’, or crooked to the purists. Some were specimens, others rejects.
The Snowcone Snowbell is a JFSchmidt selection that solves those concerns and adds other improvements. We have seen little, if any twig dieback and the perfect leaves come out a bright green on each and every branch. The flowers are still as spectacular as with the Snowbells you are familiar with, but maybe seem even whiter against the bright green leaves. The Snowcone is truly impressive and deserving of the name.
In addition, this tree has a highly preferred broadly pyramidal form with a good central leader. The height will be approximately 25 feet tall by 20 feet wide. Fall color is yellow and the winter form always interesting with lateral limbs that gently sweep upward. It prefers moist, but well drained soil, has a fibrous root system and is moderately easy to transplant.
I always appreciate any comments you have on this or other varieties you work with.
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