En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Friday - March 06, 2009

From: Stratford, SD
Region: Midwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Can Calycanthus floridus survive in South Dakota?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Calycanthus in South Dakota? I've recently purchased some seeds for a calycanthus plant (floridus I think). I'm going to start them indoors but am wondering if this can survive a South Dakota winter. I am in northeast SD and January can get mighty cold! I've read that this shrub is rated as both zone 5 and zone 4. I live in a small rural community and have a large yard with many ash trees, some sumac and a large lilac hedge. So, can it survive outdoors and if so, should I wait to transplant until the shrub is more mature?

ANSWER:

This is going to have to be a judgment call on your part. Calycanthus floridus (eastern sweetshrub) is listed as being viable from Zones 4 to 9. Stratford, in Brown County, appears On the USDA Plant Hardiness map to be in a Zone 3b area, which involves minimum average temperatures of -35 deg. to -30 deg. and is surrounded by Zones 4a to 4b, avg. min, temps -30 to -20 deg. F. According to this USDA Plant Profile sweetshrub is not presently growing in nor native to South Dakota. Our Native Plant Database says it prefers a rich, moist loam, and can grow well in part shade. The Database also recommends propagation by seed, which we understand you intend to do. It is a lovely plant and probably worth the effort. We would suggest that you follow your plan of putting it in a pot, putting it outside during the warmer weather, and taking it indoors during the cold for the first couple years. Then, plant it outside in a sheltered spot after the last freeze date for your area. You can always cover the plant overnight when a really severe cold spell is forecast. There is more information on the plant in this Floridata website Calycanthus floridus, but it indicates the hardiness zone for this plant as being Zones 5 to 9. 


Calycanthus floridus

Calycanthus floridus

Calycanthus floridus

Calycanthus floridus

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Holes in leaves of wax myrtle from Austin
April 30, 2011 - I just purchased 4 of the 5 gallon Wax Myrtles at the last spring plant sale and after planting them, they are getting eaten by bugs leaving holes in the leaves. I can't find any of the bugs doing th...
view the full question and answer

Privacy screen shrubs for Butler PA
August 09, 2013 - Here is what I want in a bush: native to Western Pa.(Southern Butler County), appropriate for a horse pasture,fast growing, not too aggressive (I will mow around it regularly and can prune occasionall...
view the full question and answer

Texas Mountain Laurel in Florida
March 13, 2009 - Hi Mr. Smarty, This is more a comment than a question about Barbara Medford's (Estero, FL) question of whether you can grow Texas Mountain Laurel in Ft. Myers, FL. About 4 yrs. ago, I purchased a ...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen hedge for constant rain
June 24, 2008 - We live in Washington State up north by Canadian border. We need a hedge that will survive the constant rain. We have tried cedar. They seem to turn brown and die,one at a time so we keep replacing th...
view the full question and answer

Low growing, flowering evergreen plants for Pflugerville TX
March 30, 2010 - I am wondering if you can suggest some low growing, flowering evergreen plants for my garden.
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center