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Growing Sweetspire

Growing Sweetspire

Little Henry Sweetspire


Attractive, hardy North American native shrubs with long spikes of drooping, fragrant flowers in late spring to early summer and attractive bright red fall color. Good for specimen plants, foundation planting, massing, and flowering hedges. Flowers are attractive to butterflies. Hardy in zones 5 to 9. Plant potted Sweetspire in spring after the last frost. Prepare a hole 12 to 18 inches deep and wide, enriched with compost or other organic matter and plant with the roots slightly deeper than in the pot.


For full sun to part shade in moist to wet soil. Prefers soils rich in organic matter and tolerates heavy clay soil. Has a suckering habit, and suckers can be removed to prevent spreading.  

Fertilizer Recommendations

Use low rates of Gromax Fertilizer Tablets 20-10-5 (51165), Algoflash All-Purpose Liquid Fertilizer 6-6-6 (51085), or Neptune Fish & Seaweed Fertilizer 2-3-1 (51221).

Alternative Products

Other hardy shrubs for moist to wet soil conditions include Bergeson Compact Dogwood (20329), Ruby Spice Summersweet (20307), and Sambucus.

Complimentary Products

Low to moderate feeders that benefit from occasional fertilization. Other hardy shrubs attractive to butterflies include Butterfly Bush, Lilac, and Spirea.

Sweetspire Facts

Free of significant pests or problems. Classified as Itea virginica and also known as Virginia Sweetspire.

Growing Tips