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Lindera benzoin

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Spicebush (Lindera benzoin) at The Growing Place

Spicebush in fall

Spicebush in fall

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Spicebush (Lindera benzoin) at The Growing Place

Spicebush in fall

Spicebush in fall

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  10 feet

Spread:  10 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade  full shade 

Hardiness Zone:  4b


An uncommon native shrub with radiant yellow flowers in early spring before the leaves followed by showy red berries in fall, beautiful gold fall color and fragrant foliage; blends nicely into natural settings and moist areas

Growing Place Choice Plants

Our Growing Place Choice plants are chosen because they are strong performers year after year, staying attractive with less maintenance when planted in the right place.

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Ornamental Features

Spicebush features delicate lemon yellow flowers along the branches in early spring before the leaves. It has light green foliage throughout the season. The pointy leaves turn an outstanding gold in the fall. It produces red berries from early to late fall. The smooth olive green bark adds an interesting dimension to the landscape.

Landscape Attributes

Spicebush is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with a more or less rounded form. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Spicebush is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • General Garden Use
  • Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens

Planting & Growing

Spicebush will grow to be about 10 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 10 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 2 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub performs well in both full sun and full shade. It prefers to grow in average to moist conditions, and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This species is native to parts of North America.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Garden  Naturalizing 
Flowers  Fruit  Fall Color  Bark 
Ornamental Features