Clethra alnifolia


USPP 21,589; CBR 4167

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Vanilla Spice Clethra in landscape Close up of two Vanilla Spice Clethra flowers Size comparison of Vanilla Spice Clethra with pencil Bloom comparison of Vanilla Spice Clethra with dime YouTube video describing the plant shown on this page
  • Supersized flowers
  • Native to North America
  • Fragrant

Supersized blooms! Vanilla Spice® clethra is a delightful, deer resistant native plant that attracts butterflies and hummingbirds. Glossy dark green leaves set off the pure white summer flowers, which emit a sweet fragrance reminscent of root beer. Selected especially for its extra large flowers - individual florets are roughly double the size of other varieties.

Awards MOBOT Tried and True

USDA Zone 4 - 9 (-30°F/-34.4°C)

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Exposure Full sun, Part sun

Height 3 - 6'

Width 3 - 6'

Finish Time 1 season

Type Deciduous

Bloom Time Summer

Flower Color White

Foliage Color Green

Liner Sizes 2 1/4", 4", Quick Turn

Soil Grows well in moist and even wet soil though it will tolerate some dryness once established. Prefers soil pH on the acidic side.

Pruning If pruning is desired, do so in early spring, when the new growth begins to appear on the stems.

Uses Foundation plantings; mixed borders; wildlife gardens; naturalizing.

Growing Tips Clethra is a reliable choice for flowering in shaded conditions, though flowering, fragrance, and fall color are all at their best with at least a few hours of sun each day.