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Common Privet, European Privet

Ligustrum vulgare

Family: Oleaceae (oh-lee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ligustrum (lig-GUS-trum) (Info)
Species: vulgare (vul-GAIR-ee) (Info)
Synonym:Ligustrum vulgar var. pendulum



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Seed is poisonous if ingested

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Late Winter/Early Spring

Mid Spring

Late Spring/Early Summer



Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

4.5 or below (very acidic)

4.6 to 5.0 (highly acidic)

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

8.6 to 9.0 (strongly alkaline)

over 9.1 (very alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From woody stem cuttings

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Aurora, Illinois

Traverse City, Michigan

, Newfoundland and Labrador

Independence, Ohio

Crossville, Tennessee

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 14, 2015, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

The European Privet has prettier foliage than the Asian species that is darker green and a little longer leaf. It is fine as a sheared hedge. As a regular shrub it is average to poor in appearance; being messy or just a little bit messy. The white flower clusters, similar to lilacs in structure, are sort of nice with a funny fragrance. It has no fall color, nor pretty bark. When it escapes cultivation it is an invasive plant in open woods of eastern North America. It and other privets can develop sharp woody spurs that hurt. The several Asian species are more common in landscapes and escaped in nature. The European species has its flower and fruit structures as terminal on the branches while the Asian species inflorescences are lateral.


On Sep 29, 2010, DMersh from Perth,
United Kingdom (Zone 7b) wrote:

Semi evergreen plant with some leaves being retained during winter. The black berries produced in late summer are poisonous.


On Dec 20, 2006, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Common Privet, European Privet Ligustrum vulgare is naturalised in Texas and other States an is considered an invasive plant in Texas.


On Jan 2, 2005, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

This shrub can be used as a specimen plant or as a hedge. It tolerates all but very wet soil conditions. It grows in a wide range of soil pH values, too. Works well in urban settings. It should be pruned after it flowers in the spring. If you don't prune it, birds like to eat the fruit during the winter.