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Leaves and nectar are poisonous if ingested

Leucothoe

Ericaceae
Evergreen, Shrubs, Flowers

Good filler plants that are best used in masses; smaller ones are even effective in mixed containers. They have leathery leaves and clusters of small, urn-shaped creamy white flowers. Need deep, acid, humus-rich soil; well suited to woodland gardens. Keep out of drying winds. For shape and neatness, prune oldest stems to the ground occasionally.

Leucothoe axillaris ‘Curly Red’ (photo courtesy of PlantHaven International, Inc.)
Leucothoe axillaris ‘Curly Red’ (photo courtesy of PlantHaven International, Inc.)

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Leucothoe axillaris

Native to the southeastern U.S. Spreading, arching plant to 2–4 ft. tall and 3–6 ft. wide. Leaves are bronze when they emerge; they mature to dark green, then turn red in winter. Drooping, 1–3-in.-long flower clusters are held along the stems in midspring. Regular water. ‘Curly Red’ has red new growth that ages to apple green; leaves are tightly curled.

Leucothoe davisiae

Native to bogs and wet places in Siskiyou and the Sierra Nevada mountains. Upright shrub grows to 3 ft. high and 5 ft. wide. Glossy green leaves are bronze-tinted in winter. Flowers in erect, 2–4-in.-long clusters bloom in early summer. Ample water.

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