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Clethra alnifolia

Common Name(s):
Clethra, Summersweet, Sweet pepperbush
Cultivar(s):
Hummingbird , Paniculata, Pinkspire , Rosea
Categories:
Native Plants, Shrubs
Comment:

Yellow fall foliage; spreads by stolons; hardy, carefree; can get mites if soil is too dry; flowers attracts bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds; fruit attracts birds; salt spray tolerant; native to damp areas of eastern US. This plant is resistant to damage by deer.

Height:
4-10 ft.
Foliage:
Alternate, simple, glossy, sharply serrated medium to deep green leaves; 1.5 to 4 in. long; often woolly tomentose below; late to leaf out in spring; pale yellow to golden-brown fall color
Flower:
Intense, spicy fragrant flowers on 2-6 in. racemes in summer; five white, pink, or rose petals; occurs on current season's growth; black, peppercorn-like capsules
Zones:
3 to 9
Habit:
Deciduous
Site:
Sun to partial shade; moist to wet acidic, organically enriched soil
Texture:
Medium
Form:
Dense oval to upright shrub; rounded top; often suckers to form a colony
Exposure:
Partial shade; moist to wet soil; tolerates salt spray
Fruit:
Intense, spicy fragrance white racemes in summer
Width:
4-6 ft.
Tags:
deciduous, hummingbirds, bees, deer resistant, native

NCCES plant id: 465

Clethra alnifolia Flower spike
Photo by Tom Potterfield, CC BY-NC-SA - 2.0
Clethra alnifolia C. alnifolia in the wild
Photo by John Brandauer, CC BY-NC-ND - 2.0
Clethra alnifolia C. alnifolia fall color
Photo by Geneva Wirth, CC BY-NC-2.0