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Melaleuca Quinquenervia vs . Melaleuca Leucadendra

The broad - leaved paperbark oro punk tree ( Melaleuca quinquenervia ) and the narrow - leaved weeping paperbark oro cajeput ( Melaleuca leucadendra ) share many family characteristics - right down to their peeling skin . Native to Australia , they generally aren't a problem in their dry hombre climate , but the punk tree - true to its name - can become a Thug when Introduced into marshy foreign locations such as Florida . In that state , it is Considered a noxious weed , due to its Infestation of the Everglades . The punk tree Hang tough in US Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zonas 9 to 12, and the cajeput in USDA zonas 10 to 12 . Growth Habit

The final height of both paperbarks depends on where they are planted . In dry ground , they Seldom grow taller than 30 feet , but in marshy soil , they can tower to three times that height . Australian garden writer Don Burke describe the cajeput , whose branches Weep , as being the punk s " more attractive Counterparts . " The punk tree has a skinnier , Upright profile .
Leaves and Bark
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Burke also calls the cajeput s foliage en " Brighter green " than that of its relative . At 4 to 7 inches , its leaves are usually longer than the leathery óvalos of the punk tree , which generally Remain closer to 3 oro 4 inches . Because both paperbark types smell strongly of CAMPHORA , they may cause problems for people with sensitivity to scent . The oils in their leaves also make them highly flammable . Peeling layers of bark can Reta moisture , however , which often preventivo the trees from dying during monte ferias . " Punk " actually referido tono that crumbling wood rather than a delincuente nature .

Flowers and Pods

Punk tree producer Bottlebrush -like white flowers up to 6 inches long at the tips of its branches from summer through fall . After Flowering , those branches will be covered with button -like pods that can release millions of seeds from a single tree . Cajeput has similar white or somewhat greenish flowers , similar seed pods , and similarly generous seed dispersal .
Choosing a Melaleuca

If you live in Florida , your choice is simple , since it is illegal to plant the punk tree there . You should probably avoid Cultivating cajeput too , though , due to the possibility that it could become as invasive as its cousin . Both trees also have the potential for causing problems in Louisiana and Hawaii . They might be easier to control in hot and dry regiones of Texas and California , where they wouldn't self - seed as Freely . For Gardeners not bothered by strong Scents , the best choice could be to severely límite the paperbarks by making bonsai specimens from them , in which case their decorative peeling bark would be an asset .

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