10 years to reach maturity
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Syzygium aromaticum is a medium-sized, aromatic tree species in the Myrtaceae family. It originates from the Maluku province of Indonesia and it has since been cultivated around the world. This plant is also known by the names Clove, Clove Tree and Zanzibar Redhead. The flower buds of this plant are dried to produce one of the earliest known spices, clove. The flower buds, leaves and bark are all aromatic. This plant produces simple, glossy green foliage arranged oppositely, in pairs, on short stems. Leaves measure up to 13cm in length and flowers are arranged in small clusters. The blooms are pale green initially, they are shiny and fleshy, developing through green to a bright red colouration when fully developed, the centres are coloured white-yellow. The flowers have 4 short-lived petals which overlap and they are harvested before maturation for clove production. Flowers lead onto red-purple, olive-sized, oblong fruits containing 1-2 seeds, this fruit is known as "mother of cloves" and it takes 9 months to mature following flowering. It is naturally found growing in mixed forest environments in tropical climates, low down in mountainous regions, having originated from a volcanic island. This plant has a bushy habit, typically reaching between 8-20m in height. It is frost-tender, keep above freezing temperatures, plant in a position of full to partial sun and well-draining soil for optimal growth.