Euonymus japonicus 'Benkomasaki' GREEN ROCKET

Euonymus japonicus 'Benkomasaki'
Euonymus japonicus 'Benkomasaki' GREEN ROCKET
Japanese spindle
SIZE/TYPE medium-sized shrub
 taller shrub
USUAL WIDTH 0.5-0.8m
LEAVES evergreen broadleaf
LOCATION full sun to shade
SOIL TYPE acidic (peaty) to neutral
SOIL MOISTURE REQUIREMENTS evenly moist (dislikes drought)
USDA zone (lowest) 6   (down to -23°C)
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Evergreen broadleaf
Hedging plants
náhled fotonáhled fotonáhled foto
Japanese spindles are evergreen shrubs, or small trees with grafted crowns on short stems. They are very popular in southern countries and where winters are mild. The species has oval to ovate, deep green, glossy leaves that are densely clustered along the stems while cultivars vary with shapes and foliage colour.

GREEN ROCKET is a Japanese spindle selection introduced to market around 2000. It exhibits a strictly upright habit with neatly erect branches, densely covered with 3 cm long, oval, deep green, highly glossy, evergreen leaves with gently serrated margin. One would even say that one of its parents must have been another upright growing variety with small foliage Microphyllus, same as which it is little more cold-tolerant.

In U.S. National Arboretum bulletin from November 1999 an article about a new Japanese spindle variety was published. Its trade name was Green Spire, and it was originally discovered in Japan during a journey of three botanists John Creech, Fred Meyer, and Sylvester March in 1978. There it was allegedly called Benkomasaki which in the article was spelled as Bekomasaki. Upon return they propagated collected cuttings in the USA and in 1991 re-introduced the plant under a new name Green Spire. However, International Plant Names, the agency for naming new plant varieties, contradicts this and insists that Benkomasaki is a former name of GREEN ROCKET, and Green Spire is a separate though very similar variety which we can only approve of seeing them growing side by side.

Thanks to compact shape and slow growth GREEN ROCKET seldom requires pruning. Though you can cut it to rejuvenate old plants or to keep it shorter, but should you have ambitions for a spherical shrub choose another variety for sure. It serves a handsome evergreen gem of a vertical accent in a mixed border and is certainly a great choice for hedging.

Japanese spindles are quite soil tolerant. They will do well in almost any well-drained soil, preferably moist, but not wet. Acid soil will assure deeper shade of green leaves. Grow them on any location from full sun to deep shade. GREEN SPIRE is about 2-3 °C hardier than the species and withstands approx. -23 °C (USDA zone 6), thou we still recommend finding it a protected location in zone 6, away from cutting winds and frost pockets. Not suitable for outdoor pots.

Last update 14-11-2020

Ilex (maximowicziana var.kanehirae)
Euonymus japonicus
Euonymus japonicus
  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
LARGE PLANTS over 150 cmspecimens, screening and hedging shrubs

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