Mt Cuba Center
Explore the Gardens Virtual Tour Virtual Tour

Mt. Cuba is open Wednesday through Sunday, 10 am to 6 pm.

An ecological gardening certificate student completes a Native Plants of Fall exam in Mt. Cuba Center's naturalistic gardens.
Ecological Gardening Certificate Learn More Learn More
Program Guide

Classes offered year-round. Learn to garden in harmony with nature, take an art or wellness class, and more!

Wide shot of flowering Amsonia.
Latest Trial: Amsonia for the Mid-Atlantic Region Amsonia for the Mid-Atlantic Region Amsonia for the Mid-Atlantic Region
Trial Garden

Mt. Cuba Center evaluates native plants and related cultivars for horticultural and ecological value.

Mt. Cuba Center's natural lands pictured at sunset.
Protecting Natural Lands Learn More Learn More
Ecological Land Management

Mt. Cuba conserves and stewards more than 1,000 acres including meadows, forests, streams and riparian corridors.

Two guests walk down the West Slope path in spring at Mt. Cuba Center.
Gift a Membership Gift Guide Gift Guide

Enjoy unlimited general admission, member discounts, guest passes, and more!

Mt Cuba Center
Back to list

Illicium floridanum

Native Plants

Florida Anise Tree

4 Photos


Florida anise tree (Illicium floridanum) is an underused gem poised for wider use in shady, dry gardens beneath evergreen trees like eastern white pine (Pinus strobus). This broad-leaved evergreen shrub is  upright-rounded in shape and reaches 10′ tall. It requires acidic soils and shady conditions in our mid-Atlantic climate. Florida anise tree has a delightful midto late spring flowering display, producing dark burgundy-red star-shaped flowers held above its fragrant foliage. It makes an excellent border, accent, or massing shrub, combining well with a variety of plants including drooping leucothoe (Leucothoe fontanesiana), ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris), Christmas fern (Polystichum acrostichoides), Carolina rhododendron (Rhododendron minus), and rosebay rhododendron (Rhododendron maximum). Zones 6-10. 

More Details

  • Plant Type
  • Sun/Shade Conditions
  • Foliage Character
  • Soil Moisture
  • Flowering Period
  • Soil PH
  • Flower Color
    red, white 
  • Summer Foliage Color
  • Fall Foliage Color
  • Fruit/Seed Color
    brown, tan