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American Beautyberry
American Beautyberry
September 2, 2015

Common Name: Alice Oakleaf Hydrangea
Botanical Name: Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Alice’
Family: Hydrangeaceae
Zone: 5-9
Height: 10-12′
Spread: 10-12′
Bloom Time: May, June

Bloom Description
Creamy-white flowers decorate a 10-14″ long inflorescence in early summer and mature to a pinkish-rose color as the season progresses.

Trail/Garden Location
This is a favorite shrub of Crystal Bridges and is planted throughout the entire garden. You can see it up close along the Art Trail, East Terrace and the North Lawn.

Garden Uses
This large shrub is used in our garden for back-drop plantings. The flower and striking fall foliage color make this a great candidate for a foundation planting or as a specimen in a home garden. They prefer afternoon shade (especially in the south), but can grow in the full sun, although they tend to show premature fall color in late summer when stressed. Moist to average soil is best for this species. If you do choose to prune (I don’t, as the form is beautiful), they bloom off of old wood, so prune immediately after flowering.

Wildlife Benefits
Used as a source of nectar for some pollinating species. Turkey’s browse the seeds in the fall.

Leaf Type
The 8-10″ leaves are lobed with moderately-deep sinuses. The dark green summer foliage turns burgundy to red, which provides a seasonal interest in autumn. This species has one of the best fall colors in our garden!