Calycanthus occidentalis (Spice Bush)


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Plant Description: This is a rounded deciduous shrub with erect, multiple dark brown stems and leathery dark green leaves that have a spicy aromatic fragrance. Flowers are solitary and large reaching 2-3 in, with multiple dark red to purplish petals. Blooms with individual flowers only lasting for a few days. Fruit are woody. Leaves turn a clear yellow before dropping in fall. The leaves of this plant are edible. *NEVER CONSUME PLANTS WITHOUT PROPER ID*

  • Height: 5-15ft
  • Width: 3-12ft
  • Watering needs: regular
  • Sun needs: full sun to part shade
  • Soil needs: moist; tolerates sand, clay, no drainage, seasonal flooding
  • Bloom Time: Spring to summer
  • Ripening Time: throughout winter

Landscape Use and Ecological Function: This plant is found near streams, lakes in woodland forests, and moist canyons from 600-5000 ft. We recommend planting in meadowscapes or woodland gardens. This plant is excellent at bolstering habitat. Fast growing once it is established, can form thickets.

*Photo by SevenOaks Nursery*

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