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MITCHELLA repens

Image of Mitchella repens

©Pennystone Gardens

Family

Rubiaceae

Botanical Name

MITCHELLA repens

Plant Common Name

Partridgeberry

General Description

A signature plant of the eastern North American woods, this creeping evergreen roots along its stems to form lush mats of small rounded dark-green leaves with pale midribs. Paired, fragrant white flowers are borne in the leaf nodes in spring and early summer, followed by plump waxy red fruits. White-fruited forms are occasionally available. The fruits are edible but of poor flavor.

Give this year-round ornamental a humus-rich, acid to neutral soil and partial to full shade. It works well as a ground cover, in a shady mixed border, or in containers. Propagate it from fall cuttings.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6

  • Plant Type

    Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade, Full Shade

  • Height

    1"-2" / 2.5cm - 5.1cm

  • Width

    10"-18" / 25.4cm - 45.7cm

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Late Spring, Early Summer

  • Native To

    Northeastern United States, Mid-Atlantic United States, Southeastern United States, Central United States, Canada

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Mat-forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White

  • Fruit Color

    Red

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    Yes

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Edging, Foundation, Groundcover, Hanging Basket, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall, Wildflower

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No