Alphabetical Plant Listing

Lindera benzoin (Spice Bush)

Northern Spicebush, Spice Bush, Spicebush, Wild Allspice


A lovely harbinger of spring, Lindera benzoin (Spice Bush) is a medium to tall, multi-stemmed, rounded, deciduous shrub noted for its early flowers, red berries, and excellent fall color. Its graceful, slender branches are studded with dense umbel-like clusters of sweetly fragrant, tiny, pale yellow flowers in early-mid spring. Blooming before the leaves unfurl, the blossoms attract butterflies and other pollinators. Spice Bush is dioecious with male and female flowers on separate plants. The female flowers are followed by bright glossy red berries which mature in fall and are attractive to birds and small mammals. The foliage of thick, obovate, pale green leaves, 5 in. long (12 cm), warms up to golden-yellow in fall. Both the fruit and foliage are aromatic, emitting a spicy fragrance when bruised. Fast-growing, easy to grow, this eastern North American native is a fine choice for moist, shady places or or naturalizing.

  • Grows up to 6-12 ft. tall and wide (180-360 cm).
  • A full sun to part shade lover, this plant is best grown in averageslightly acidmedium, well-drained soils. Tolerates full shade as well as a wide range of soils, including clay and wet soils. Best flower production and fall color are obtained in full sun.
  • No serious pest and disease issues. Deer resistant.
  • Perfect for mixed shrub borders, woodland gardens, naturalized areas, rain gardens or along ponds or streams.
  • Propagate by seed.
  • Native to eastern North America.

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Requirements

Hardiness 4 – 9
Climate Zones 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6
Plant Type Shrubs
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun, Shade
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid)
Fall
Height 6' – 12' (180cm – 3.6m)
Spread 6' – 12' (180cm – 3.6m)
Spacing 72" – 144" (180cm – 360cm)
Water Needs Average, High
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Southwest, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Drought, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Ponds and Streams, Rain Gardens
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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Jason Hollinger, Dan Keck, Melissa McMasters, Flickr, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 4 – 9
Climate Zones 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6
Plant Type Shrubs
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun, Shade
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid)
Fall
Height 6' – 12' (180cm – 3.6m)
Spread 6' – 12' (180cm – 3.6m)
Spacing 72" – 144" (180cm – 360cm)
Water Needs Average, High
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Northeast, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Southwest, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Drought, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Ponds and Streams, Rain Gardens
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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