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Hebe subalpina, commonly known as the subalpine hebe, is a compact evergreen shrub with small, leathery leaves. It typically forms a dense, rounded shape, making it an excellent choice for hedging or as a specimen plant. It generally reaches a height of 1 meter, with a similar spread. Its compact size makes it suitable for smaller gardens and container planting. Hebe subalpina is often found in alpine and subalpine regions of the South Island. It works well as a border plant, in rock gardens, or as a low hedge. The dense foliage provides excellent cover for smaller birds. In late spring to early summer, Hebe subalpina graces the garden with spikes of small white flowers.



Maintaining a consistent watering schedule is crucial, especially during dry periods. It prefers well-draining soil, and a thorough watering once a week is generally sufficient. However, it's essential to adjust the frequency based on local climate conditions.



Fertilise Hebe subalpina in the spring with a balanced, slow-release fertiliser. Avoid excessive use of nitrogen, as it may encourage lush foliage at the expense of flowers.



Regular pruning helps maintain a compact shape and encourages bushier growth. Prune after flowering, cutting back any straggly or dead branches. This practice promotes a more robust and aesthetically pleasing plant.



Hebe subalpina is very hardy, so no special protection is required.


Birds & Bees

Hebe subalpina attracts pollinators, making it a valuable addition to gardens to support local ecosystems. The dense foliage also provides shelter for birds, making it an excellent choice for bird-friendly landscapes.



In the wild, Hebe subalpina is commonly found in alpine and subalpine regions of the South Island. In the garden, it thrives in well-drained soil and prefers full sun to partial shade. Consider planting it in rockeries, borders, or as a low hedge.



Propagate Hebe subalpina through semi-hardwood cuttings taken in late spring or early summer. Ensure the cuttings have a heel, dip them in rooting hormone, and plant them in a mix of perlite and compost. Keep the soil consistently moist until roots develop.


Diseases, Insects & Pests

Hebe subalpina is generally resilient, but like any plant, it may be susceptible to certain diseases. Keep an eye out for signs of powdery mildew or leaf spot. To prevent infestations, ensure good air circulation around the plant and avoid overhead watering.



If Hebe subalpina is not readily available, consider other hebe species like Hebe rakaiensis or Hebe speciosa. These varieties share similar characteristics and are suitable alternatives.


Plants to Pair With

Complement the beauty of Hebe subalpina by pairing it with other native plants like Astelia, Phormium, or Leptospermum. These plants not only share a native habitat but also create a visually harmonious garden design.

Hebe subalpina

    • Evergreen: Yes
    • Flower colour: White
    • Mature size: 1m wide x 1m tall
    • Temperature: Hardy
    • Light: Sun/semi shade
    • Moisture: Medium
    • Soil: Well drained
    • Wind tolerance: Hardy


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