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Eastern Sweetshrub

Calycanthus floridus var. glaucus

Family: Calycanthaceae
Genus: Calycanthus (kal-ee-KAN-thus) (Info)
Species: floridus var. glaucus
Synonym:Calycanthus glaucus
Synonym:Calycanthus floridus var. laevigatus
Synonym:Calycanthus fertilis




Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Flowers are fragrant

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


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:

Partial to Full Shade


Seed is poisonous if ingested

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Maroon (Purple-Brown)

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Late Spring/Early Summer



This plant is resistant to deer

Other details:

This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From hardwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

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:


Albertville, Alabama

Chunchula, Alabama

Glastonbury, Connecticut

Greenville, Indiana

Natchez, Mississippi

Elba, New York

Boone, North Carolina

Waynesville, North Carolina

Hallieford, Virginia

Petersburg, Virginia

Vienna, Virginia

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 1, 2016, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

This species is hardy to Z4.

It does well in full sun here in Boston Z6a.

The variety differs from the other variety (var. floridus) in having hairless young twigs and undersides of the leaves.

The fragrance reminds me of rotting apples. It's most strongly released by crushing/scraping the twigs and leaves.

The hybrids with C. chinensis ('Venus', 'Aphrodite', 'Hartlage Wine') are much showier, with much larger flowers. Unfortunately, they are not fragrant.


On Jul 1, 2016, raeben from Great Falls, VA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I love my calycanthus, it's probably 8 feet tall. I have had it for 2 or 3 years and it blooms almost continuously. My only complaint is that I never see any birds or bees enjoying it's bounty. Too me, it's very subtly frangrant up close, but my daughter says it is fragrant to her from a distance.


On May 17, 2010, Switz from Bucklin, MO (Zone 5b) wrote:

Just bought an Eastern Sweetshrub and the tag said hardy to zone 5. I hope this is the case as we are in north Missouri. Will update as it becomes established.


On Mar 17, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

Calycanthus fertilis SWEETSHRUB Dec (z6) (ENa,Fra)
We're solving a mystery:some books say C.fertilis is more fragrant,some say C.floridus. Our fertilis haven't bloomed yet but soon we'll know! For now,these somewhat smlr shrubs have similar wine-colored fls.S-PS/M