Fothergilla gardenii - Dwarf Fothergilla
Family: Hamamelidaceae

Hear the scientific name

Fothergilla gardenii is a moisture-loving, acid soil-requiring compact small shrub with multi-season interests. Dwarf Fothergilla displays showy white-green flowers in mid-spring and vibrant late autumn foliage. It is often utilized as a specimen, group planting, or facer shrub.

F   E   A   T   U   R   E   S
  form Form

-small deciduous shrub

-maturing slowly at 3' tall x 3' wide

-upright rounded growth habit, becoming globular with age

-slow growth rate

foliage Foliage

-medium to dark green (occasionally blue-green) and resembling a Witchhazel leaf

-alternate, broadly obovate, with crenate margins on the upper half

-veins impressed (sunken), with the short petiole pubescent

-autumn color a vibrant mixture of yellow-orange-pink-scarlet on the same plant at the same time

-coloring in Oct. to early Nov. and often showy, especially when placed in full sun to partial sun

Flowers
flowers

-white, apetalous (no petals), with the showy portions being the white filaments (to 1" long each) that expand from the emerging light green oval inflorescences

-appearing in late Apr. or early May as the leaves start to emerge and very showy, effective for 1-2 weeks

Fruit
fruit

-small olive-brown capsules, noticeable but not showy

Twig

-light tan and zigzag, becoming gray on branches

-lightly pubescent twigs are terminated by very pubescent buds, most of which are ovoid floral buds

Trunk

-not applicable

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Culture

-full sun to full shade

-needs moist, rich, well-drained, acid soil that is irrigated during dry periods of summer for best performance

-propagated primarily by rooted stem cuttings

-few disease or pest problems, but very subject to decline and death under alkaline soil and drought stress conditions

-moderately available in container form

-tolerant of wet sites, but not tolerant of dry conditions, partially due to the shallow root system

Hardiness

-zones 5 to 8

Origin

-native to Southeastern U.S.

U   S   A   G   E
 

Assets

-showy white apetalous (no petals) flowers

-brilliant mixture of autumn colors

-compact form

-wet site tolerant

Liabilities

-slow growth

-not drought tolerant

Function

-foundation, facer, mass planting, seasonal interest, or specimen shrub

-good in combination with Azaleas and Rhododendrons as long as all have acid soil

Texture

-medium texture in foliage and when bare

-thick density in foliage and when bare

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Varieties and Cultivars - Search OSU PlantFacts for additional plants in this species

Alternates

-companion shrubs for shady spots (Buxus, Kalmia, Leucothoe, Pieris, Rhododendron [including Azaleas], etc.) - most of these require moist, well-drained, acidic soils

 


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