Clethra alnifolia “Pink Spires”
Plant Abstract

Known as- Summersweet
Grow Zone - 4 to 8
Type- Deciduous shrub
Familial- Clethraceae
Smith Scl. hardy? No
Geography- None
ht.- 3 to 8 ft.
Span- 4 to 6 ft.
Coloring- Shell pink
Shade/Light- Full sun to part shade
Moisture- Medium to wet
Hi/Lo Maint- Low
Easily grown in average, moderate wet to wet soils in full sun to part shade. Prefers part shade and consistently damp, acidic soils. Tolerates full shade. Promptly remove root suckers unless naturalized look is desired.
This summersweet cultivar is a densely-branched, rounded, suckering deciduous shrub which typically grows 3-8” tall and features narrow, fluffy, bottlebrush-like, terminal racemes (2-6’ long) of extremely fragrant, shell pink flowers which bloom on current growth for approximately 4-6 weeks in July and August. Toothed, ovate-oblong, glossy dark green leaves (to 4’ long) turn a variable but generally attractive yellow/golden brown in fall. Flowers give way to dark brown seed capsules which may persist well into winter. Flowers are very attractive to butterflies and bees. Somewhat unique among summer-flowering shrubs because of its ability to produce bloom in shady locations.
No serious insect or disease problems.
Common Applications-
Mass or group in lawns, foundation plantings or shrub borders. Good flowering shrub for shade or woodland gardens. Also appropriate for damp soils along stream banks or pond/water garden margins. Also may be naturalized in cottage gardens, wild gardens or naturalized areas.