Itea virginica / Virginia Sweetspire

Itea Virginia SweetspireAs a Virginia native myself, I have a special affection for this lovely plant that blooms so happily in full woodland shade.

It’s indigenous from New Jersey south to Florida.

Can you see it here or do I need a brighter photo? Click here for a photo taken in sun.


  • Flowers in June and July.
  • Grows to 3-4′ tall and wide, fuller and wider in sun. The popular variety ‘Henry’s Garnet’ (in photo) is a little larger — 4-5′ tall by 6′ wide.
  • Can take lots of shade or full sun, wet or dry soils.
  • Hardy to Zones 5 to 9.


  • Some authorities credit this plant with good drought tolerance, others with needing moist soil, and my experience bears out the former. Good news!
  • It’s bug- and disease-free in my garden.
  • As for pruning, I removed the occasional stem that might be lying on the ground or just looking old and tired. Very easy plant.