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This adaptable large shrub has bright fall color and is one of the earliest spring flowering shrubs! Its delicate yellow flowers are an important food source for early emerging pollinators, and its fall drupes are welcome food for migrating birds. A host plant for spicebush swallowtail butterflies and promethea silkmoths!

Plants can be male, female, or both (dioecious). All plants flower,  but only female and dioecious plants will set fruit. Our plants are too young to be sexed.

Light: Full Sun, Part Sun/Shade, Shade

Soil Moisture: Wet, Wet Mesic, Mesic

Soil Type: Loam, Humus, Sandy Loam

Height: 5’-15’

Width: 5’-15’

Bloom Color: Yellow

Bloom Time: March

Fruit: Red drupes (berries) mature in fall.

Fall Color: Yellow

Root Type: Branching 

Notable Wildlife Interactions: Flowers attract mainly small bees and flies. Hosts the spicebush swallowtail butterfly, moths such as the promethea and tulip tree beauty. Drupes are eaten by birds such as thrushes, viro, and bobwhite. Generally not browsed by deer.

Notes: Crushed stems and leaves have a distinct spicy smell. Various parts of the plant were historically used for spices and teas. Drupes are high in fat, so are particularly important to migrating birds.

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