Spicebush

FAMILY: Lauraceae | GENUS: LINDERA

TYPE
  • Shrubs
  • Trees
  • Deciduous
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Full Sun
  • Partial Shade
WATER
  • Regular Water

Plant Details

Spicebushes are grown principally for the beauty of their fall foliage; early spring clusters of small, greenish yellow flowers on leafless shoots are attractive but not conspicuous. On female plants, fruit will follow the blossoms if a male plant is nearby. Best used at woodland edge or as space fillers. Need good drainage; tolerate some drought. The common name refers to the spicy odor of the crushed leaves.

spicebush

lindera benzoin

  • US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to woodlands of eastern U.S. Reaches 612 feet tall and broad.
  • Light green leaves are 35 inches long, half as wide.
  • Yellow fall color and plant form are best in full sun; if plants are grown in shade, foliage color isn't as intense and habit is loose and open.
  • Fruit (noticeable after leaf fall) is bright red, up to inches long.
  • Host plant for the spicebush swallowtail butterfly.

japanese spicebush

lindera obtusiloba

  • US, MS; USDA 6-7.
  • Native to Japan, China, Korea.
  • To 1020 feet tall, not quite as wide.
  • Leaves are 5 inches long, 4 inches wide, occasionally lobed near the tip to give a mitten shape.
  • Fall color is an exceptionally brilliant yellow that develops even in shade and holds for 2 weeks or more.
  • Small ( inches-wide) red fruit eventually turns black.

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