- Seedling Size: 12-18″
- Seedling Age: 2-0
- Mature Height: 5 – 15 feet
- Mature Width: 10 – 15 feet
- Soil Type: Clay, Loamy, Sandy
- Moisture: Moderate, Moist
- Sun: Partial Shade, Shade
- Growth Rate: Slow
Key Characteristics of Northern Spicebush
- One of the first shrubs to flower in spring, spicebush brightens gardens and supports early pollinators.
- Bark is dark grey with lighter lenticels. Smells somewhat like allspice.
- Large, fragrant leaves recall spicebush’s tropical cousins and turn sunny yellow in autumn.
- Bright red berries are produced in late summer. They are high in the fats birds need for energy in fall and winter.
Visitors Attracted to Northern Spicebush
Help Control Invasives!
Northern spicebush enjoys similar conditions to glossy buckthorn, a native plant to Eurasia but has been commonly planted in this country as a hedge and for wildlife food and cover. It was widely recommended for conservation plantings in the Midwest until its invasive tendencies became apparent; it creates dense thickets and out-competes native vegetation. Its fruit is widely dispersed by birds and small mammals (via Michigan DNR).