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The Plant Guide

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Summersweet

Clethra alnifolia 'Pink Spire'

KLETH-rah all-nih-FOE-lee-ah

Very fragrant, light pink bottlebrush flowers grace this native shrub in late summer and early fall, attracting butterflies and other insects and perfuming the garden for weeks. Plant it in beds or borders, in a woodland or shade garden, or at waterside. It also has nice fall color.

Noteworthy CharacteristicsFragrant flowers. Attracts butterflies, bees, and other insects. Eastern U.S. native. Blooms well in shade.

CareGrow in full sun to part shade (it will tolerate full shade) and moist to wet, acidic, fertile soil. Prefers a lighter soil, but will tolerate clay. Remove root suckers to prevent unwanted spread.

PropagationRoot cuttings in summer.

ProblemsGenerally trouble-free.

  • Genus : Clethra
  • Zones : 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
  • Plant Height : 3 to 6 feet
  • Plant Width : 3 to 6 feet
  • Bloom Time : Early Fall, Fall, Late Summer, Summer
  • Characteristics : Fragrant Flowers, Showy Fall Foliage
  • Light : Full Sun to Partial Shade
  • Maintenance : Low
  • Moisture : Medium to Wet
  • Flower Color : Pink
  • Uses : Shade
  • Plant Type : Shrubs
  • Plant Seasonal Interest : Summer Interest
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