Lantern tree, Chilean Lantern tree, or Crinodendron hookerianum, is an evergreen tree native to Chile and is in the Elaeocarpaceae family, a family of plants largely found in the southern hemisphere.

Lantern tree is a sensational tree with alternate leaves that are slightly toothed and lance-shaped and very handsome being a rich dark green above and pale beneath. And the foliage is evergreen meaning it can be appreciated year-round as well as serving as a useful hedge or screen. Another asset is its size. It will slowly reach 25 feet after many years, which is convenient as it's not likely to overwhelm any adjacent structures or reach up into power lines. And its eventual spread is only 15 feet making it a good fit for modern gardens. But its most impressive asset is the nodding, urn-like (or lantern shaped) flowers. They're small, and delicate and are a striking rose-crimson that contrasts beautifully with the dark green foliage.

Its form is bushy and columnar, which along with the handsome evergreen foliage and beautiful floral display makes it worthy of a courtyard centre-piece.

Lantern tree likes moist, but well-drained acidic soil and is tolerant of a semi-shade exposure. It has no disease or pest problems and requires no pruning. Little wonder that this superb tree is the recipient of an Award of Garden Merit from the Royal Horticultural Society.

What limitation there may be is simply that it is half-hardy. In the UK it is better suited to southern England and Wales, while in the US it best suited to moderate coastal areas. It does well also in temperate Australia and New Zealand.

Lantern tree remains uncommon at this time but that is likely to change soon. At present, it will only be found in the better tree nurseries.

Lantern tree


Trees for:  Acid soils     Clay soils      Poor soils      Seashore      Dry soils     Cold soils      Wet soils     Alkaline soilsTrees_for_acid_soils.htmlTrees_for_clay_soils.htmlTrees_for_poor_soils.htmlTrees_for_seashore.htmlTrees_for_dry_soils.htmlTrees_for_Cold-exposed_areas.htmlTrees_for_wet_soils.htmlTrees_for_alkaline_soils.htmlshapeimage_4_link_0shapeimage_4_link_1shapeimage_4_link_2shapeimage_4_link_3shapeimage_4_link_4shapeimage_4_link_5shapeimage_4_link_6shapeimage_4_link_7
Trees by size                               Special features                                Forms of treesTrees_by_size.htmlSpecial_features.htmlForms_of_trees.htmlshapeimage_5_link_0shapeimage_5_link_1shapeimage_5_link_2