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Clethra alnifolia

Native Plants

Summer Sweet Clethra

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Summer sweet clethra (Clethra alnifolia) is a gem that brightens up the garden border during a quiet time of the season. This multi-stemmed, suckering shrub will grow 5-8’ high in full sun to part shade. It prefers moist to wet, acidic soils but is amazingly adaptable to dry conditions. Summer sweet clethra blooms during mid-summer with a profusion of white bottlebrush-like flowers that are very fragrant. This deciduous shrub has shiny, dark green leaves that turn an attractive yellow in fall. Plant summer sweet clethra with other summer bloomers like plum-leaf azalea (Rhododendron prunifolium), Goldsturm black-eyed Susan (Rubeckia fulgidaGoldsturm’), cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis)and black bugbane (Actaearacemosa). Zones 3-9. 

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