Why plant Audubon® Native Virginia Sweetspire?
Sprummer! That glorious time of year that bridges spring and summer. The birds are singing and the weather is warm—it has not yet become oppressively hot. Now is the time to spend lazy hours outside, soaking it all in. Pull up a lawn chair next to your Virginia Sweetspire then! Late May and early June is when it churns out its fragrant, pendulous spires of starry white blossoms, which attract butterflies in droves. Plant this easygoing Accent en masse in your wildlife-friendly garden, where it will nourish native pollinators in sprummer and beautify the landscape all year long.
Virginia Sweetspire is a part of our natural heritage, a charming Accent that’s native throughout most of the southeastern states and extending into Pennsylvania. Despite the fact that it is native here, however, the plant went virtually unnoticed by gardeners for ages. It was only in the 1980s that Virginia Sweetspire started to show up in garden centers. The reason it was overlooked for so long was because in the wild it can be a rather rangy shrub. Given a little love, it becomes a fine, floriferous Accent that you will be proud to have in your garden.
How to use Audubon® Native Virginia Sweetspire in the landscape?
Virginia Sweetspire does not only shine in summer, but in fall as well! For two full months—weather permitting—the leaves transform from bright green to burgundy and red tones, often with splashes of gold and orange thrown in. In very mild climates, some red leaves may hang on well into winter.
Hardiness Zone: 5-9
How To Plant Audubon® Native Virginia Sweetspire
In the wild, Virginia Sweetspire grows in wet woods, where it may get ungainly as it reaches toward the light. In the landscape, you can encourage neater, more compact growth by planting it in full sun or light shade. Soggy soil is great, but not a necessity; Virginia Sweetspire is surprisingly drought tolerant. Overall, this is an easy, worry-free shrub. In recent years, it has been planted along highways and in medians with success, despite receiving very little attention in those situations. This plant spreads by suckers to make a slowly expanding patch, but it is not overly aggressive in its growth.
How To Fertilize
Incorporate Elements Starter Plant food granular form into the soil when planting. If planting in spring or summer, start fertilizing late fall using Elements Starter Plant food granular form on an annual basis each late fall. Continue this for the first three years to get your plant well established.
The two plants I ordered - "large" shrubs that cost $150 each - arrived as tiny plants looking completely dead. I planted them on May 1, the day they arrived. They still look dead one week later - you can barely see the little branches sticking out of the ground in the photos.
I certainly hope they survive and grow. Aside from this order, I've had good luck with Bower and Branch.
We are sorry that you aren't pleased with your Native Virginia Sweetspire shrubs! These do ship from our grower in Missouri and due to the late, cool spring we've been having, plants are a bit behind where they typically are at this time of year.
With a little bit of time and some heat, we are confident that your Sweetspires will flush out beautifully for you!
If you ever have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us - we are here to help!
- Bower & Branch Plant Whisperers