Content Detail

Alabama snow wreath is a colony-forming, upright, open shrub with exfoliating reddish-brown stems and clusters of white, fuzzy, bottle brush-like flowers. It is native in the southeastern U. S.  and is an unusual shrub that may be difficult to find in nurseries.

  • Family (English) Rose
  • Family (botanic) Rosaceae
  • Tree or plant type Shrub
  • Foliage Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
  • Native locale North America
  • Size range Small shrub (3-5 feet), Medium shrub (5-8 feet)
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 4, Zone 5 (Northern Illinois), Zone 6 (City of Chicago), Zone 7, Zone 8
  • Soil preference Moist, well-drained soil
  • Tolerances Dry sites
  • Season of interest early spring, mid spring, late spring
  • Flower color and fragrance White
  • Shape or form Arching, Round, Thicket-forming, Upright
  • Growth rate Moderate, Slow

Size & form:

A colony-forming, upright to rounded shrub, Alabama snow wreath reaches 3 to 6 feet high and wide.  The open, arching stems have a zig-zag appearance.

Native geographic location and habitat:

Native to the eastern U.S. in Missouri, Alabama, Arkansas, and Tennessee, this shrub is found in moist woods, rocky limestone soils, and along stream banks.

Bark color and texture: 

The bark is grayish to reddish-brown.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture:

Leaves are alternate, 2 1/2 to 3 inches long and 1/2 inch wide, elliptical with stiff hairs, double serrated margins; medium green.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size:

One inch wide flowers combine into showy clusters of three to eight.  Although there are no petals, there are distinct white, bottle brush-like, fluffy stamens.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions:

The seed is a lopsided, 1/4 inch achene. not showy.

Plant care:

The Alabama snow wreath prefers full sun to part shade in moist, well-drained soil. It is tolerant of dry soil once established. Flowers on old wood, prune after flowering. It can be cut to the ground to rejuvenate and control the colony.

Disease, pests, and problems: 

This plant does not suffer from any serious disease or pest problems.


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