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CALYCANTHUS floridus 'Purpureus'

Image of Calycanthus floridus var. glaucus 'Purpureus'

Family

Calycanthaceae

Botanical Name

CALYCANTHUS floridus var. glaucus 'Purpureus'

Plant Common Name

Eastern Sweetshrub

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

Fragrant with scents of fruit and spice, the unusual flowers and purple-green foliage of sweetshrub make 'Purpureus' an interesting specimen for the shaded garden. A slightly smaller, rounded but spreading deciduous shrub that lacks hairs on its young branches, 'Purpureus' is native to the extreme southeastern United States, from Virginia to Florida.

Its leaves are oval with a gracefully and elegantly pointed tip, and dark green with purplish green undersides. As the purplish leaves begin to emerge in spring, the flowers appear on short stems. They open a rich, deep brownish-red or maroon, and look like a stumpy octopus. Wonderfully fragrant, they release a scent like a a warm, sweet fruit salad. Select a specimen in bloom at the nursery to ensure an appealing fragrance. Pollinated flowers become pear-shaped brown capsules that are also fragrant if broken. In autumn, the leaves turn yellowish.

Plant sweetshrub in any humusy well-drained soil and partial sun or partial shade. It tolerates deeper shade and drier soils, but will not grow as robustly or flower as heavily as a gardener would hope. It is lovely as part of a mixed shrub border or foundation planting, and should be located near a patio or walkway so the fragrance can be noted. Any pruning should be done immediately after flowers fade.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    5 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    6'-9' / 1.8m - 2.7m

  • Width

    6'-11' / 1.8m - 3.4m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer

  • Native To

    United States, Southeastern United States

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Spreading

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Dark Red, Brown, Sienna

  • Fruit Color

    Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Purple

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Yellow, Yellow Green

  • Bark Color

    Brown, Chocolate

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    Yes

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Semi-Double

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Foundation, Mixed Border, Screening / Wind Break

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes