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EUONYMUS obovatus

Image of Euonymus obovatus

Jesse Saylor

Family

Celastraceae

Botanical Name

EUONYMUS obovatus

Plant Common Name

Running Euonymus, Running Strawberry Bush

Special Notice

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

General Description

Quickly growing with its low, sprawling, bright green stems, running strawberry bush produces magenta fruits and attains a fall foliage color palette of maroon, pink and purple. A deciduous shrub with prostrate stems that root when they touch soil, it is native to eastcentral North America from the Great Lakes to the Tennessee River in moist and dry woodlands. This species is not susceptible to the scale that plagues more others in Euonymus.

The perfectly rounded oval leaves are tapering and an emerald green. In late spring, small flowers appear, seemingly laying atop the leaves on long stems and have mauve-tan-green petals. By late summer, the small prickled fruits ripen to magenta-red and will split open to reveal their orange-red seeds; the fruits often bleach to a lighter red or pale pink. In autumn the leaves take on tones of purple, dark red and pink, persisting late into the season.

Use running strawberry bush to vegetate partially shaded slopes, hillsides and sweeps in the woodland garden. A fast grower, it excels in moist, fertile soils but is tolerant of average to slightly drier ground although not as densely foliaged in such conditions. In North America, this species is recommended as an alternative to the invasive and scale-prone wintercreeper (Euonymus fortunei), as well as groundcover periwinkles (Vinca spp.).

There are potential health concerns regarding parts of this plant, for further information, visit http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/hort/consumer/poison/Euonysp.htm .

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    4 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Shade, Full Shade

  • Height

    9"-14" / 22.9cm - 35.6cm

  • Width

    5'-25' / 1.5m - 7.6m

  • Bloom Time

    Late Spring, Early Summer

  • Native To

    North America, Northeastern United States, Mid-Atlantic United States, North-Central United States, Central United States, Canada

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Spreading

  • Seasonal Interest

    Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Light Green, Plum, Sandy Brown

  • Fruit Color

    Red, Magenta, Orange Red

  • Fruit Color Modifier

    Bicolor

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Yellow Green, Pink, Rose, Burgundy, Dark Red

  • Foliage Color (Fall) Modifier

    Spotted/Mottled

  • Bark Color

    Lime Green, Sandy Brown

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Groundcover, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes