Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Chinese Sweetshrub, Chinese Wax Shrub
Calycanthus chinensis

Family: Calycanthaceae
Genus: Calycanthus (kal-ee-KAN-thus) (Info)
Species: chinensis (chi-NEN-sis) (Info)

Synonym:Sinocalycanthus chinensis

4 vendors have this plant for sale.

One member has or wants this plant for trade.


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

Unknown - Tell us

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)

Sun Exposure:
Light Shade
Partial to Full Shade


Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

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

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There are a total of 12 photos.
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1 positive
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral RosemaryK On Feb 12, 2011, RosemaryK from Lexington, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:

The Gossler Guide to the Best Hardy Shrubs identifies that this species was first brought to the US in the 1980's from China. It is vigorous, open eventually reaching 15-20 ft high and 10-12 feet wide. Stems grow fast.

This source says hardiness is from zones 5-9 and exposure is partial shade.

Positive massnorth On Oct 22, 2009, massnorth from Topsfield, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:

Great shrub with big leaves! Arnold Arboretum grows it, so pretty safe to say it's Zone 6 hardy.

Neutral berrygirl On Apr 21, 2006, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:

This is the description from the Forest Farm catalog: Very rare and lovely in Spring when 3'' flowers, white-flushed pink with a yellow center, nod from its bare tips. This 5-10' shrub is pretty again in Fall when its foliage turns yellow.
Also important to note, FF says it is only hardy to zone 7.

I hope to grow one next year as it sounds lovely!


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

Louisville, Kentucky
Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts
Nashville, Tennessee

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