This fine, clean-foliaged native shrub deserves to be known and utilized more than it is. In the early spring, a profusion of small yellow flowers adorns its leafless branches, brightening the landscape at a time when most other native plants are just beginning to awaken. Handsome throughout the summer with its neat foliage. Spicebush stands out again in the landscape in the fall, when its showy scarlet fruits ripen and the leaves turn bright yellow. Spicebush is dense, full, and broadly rounded when grown in full sun. Tolerates shade well, responding by developing a more open and upright form. A good choice for screens, specimens, shrub borders, or naturalizing. All parts of the plant are pleasantly aromatic when bruised. A fragrant tea can be brewed from the leaves, twigs, and bark. The berries, when dried and powdered, can be used as a substitute for allspice. Spicebush is host to the larvae of the spicebush swallowtail butterfly, and birds feed enthusiastically on the fruit. Both male and female plants blossom, but only female plants bear fruit; a male-female pair is required for fruit production. Planting two or more of these seed-grown plants improves the odds that at least one of your plants will bear fruit.
Attracts Butterflies, Wildlife Food
Hedge or Screen
Partial Shade, Shade, Sun