The Oleander, is it the right addition for your landscape?

Oleanders can be a great addition to just about any Florida landscape. They are used throughout the state and do well in just about any soil type. They do suffer damage in freezing temperatures, so precautions are needed during a frost. They come in many different varieites and colors with blooms that last throughout the year. They can be maintained as a shrub, or pruned into a tree form. They can sometimes suffer from Gall which causes a "Witches Broom" effect on twigs and branches. If this occurs, pruning out the infected areas is necessary. Oleander Moths, Caterpillars, Scales, Mealybugs, and Aphids can be a problem at times as well, so a monthly insect control program is a must. Word of warning, the Oleander although tough with beautiful blooms and being easily maintainable, is toxic and can be harmful or even fatal in the right amounts if injested by humans and or pets. With this being said, when pruning, be sure to not burn branches or foliage as the toxins will become airborne and could cause respiratory problems if inhaled. If you think the Oleander is the right addition to your landscape, choose your placement wisely to avoid small children and or pets from eating any part of the plant. In the proper environment the Oleander can give you years of enjoyment and be just what your landscape needs!