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Summersweet, Sweet Pepper Bush 'Rosea'

Clethra alnifolia

Family: Clethraceae
Genus: Clethra (KLEE-thra) (Info)
Species: alnifolia (al-nee-FOH-lee-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Rosea



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Flowers are fragrant

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade



Bloom Color:

Pale Pink


Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Mount Prospect, Illinois

Pekin, Illinois

Buckfield, Maine

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Perry, Ohio

Mountain Top, Pennsylvania

West Chester, Pennsylvania

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 21, 2015, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

Like the mother species, this variety or cultivar is a clean, neat plant with fragrant flowers in July into August with pink flowers instead of white. Gets good yellow fall color. Does ground sucker some; more so in wet soils. Easy to propagate from ground sprouts. Loved by pollinators.


On Mar 25, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

Clethra alnifolia Rosea is one of the best native shrubs for American gardens! Fragrant, late-summer flowers (attractive to butterflies) adorn handsome, deep-green foliage that ignites into flaming yellows and oranges in fall.

Rosea has been exceptionally popular for many years because of its unusual pink-blushed flowers. This plant reaches 4 to 6 feet tall and wide. Dense, compact and somewhat rounded in habit, it possesses a trouble-free disposition. Remarkably pest- and disease-free, it prefers a moist, slightly acidic, sandy soil in sun or light shade, although it tolerates heavy soils and dense shade.

This hardy Summersweet is ideal for large massing and excellent as a foundation plant, especially for problem wet spots and late-summer color when little ... read more