A gift from my son, some years ago, has turned into quite the pollinator magnet. Virginia Sweetspire, or another common name, Tassel-white. Itea virginica. Three small bushes have grown into a lovely mound of cream colored, cascading blooms.These cascading blooms have become tantalizing lures for pollinators in the vicinity of my central Virginia mountain cabin. Whether it is a brilliant orange Fritillary or a Silver-spotted Skipper the word is out.
They have arrived, along with all manner of bee, to take advantage of the buffet. These bushes satisfy a need in the natural world, and fill my heart, and my world of Nature, with great satisfaction. Plants native to the state.
This is something that I’ve grown to appreciate, over the years. Something that I wasn’t aware of, when I began making my home here in the mountains. Concentrating on growing native plants. Something that I wish more nurseries would help more of us appreciate. For instance there is a non-native, invasive plant called, Burning Bush which is widely sold, although some eastern U.S. states are banning the importation of the plant. It breaks my heart to see Burning Bush, Euonymus alata native to Asia growing, spreading, invading. Growing where plants that are native to this area would be of more benefit.
Sweetspire would be a lovely choice, rather than an alien invasive even if your neighborhood nursery has Burning Bush on sale. With perhaps just a tiny bit of effort, you could find Virginia Sweetspire.These yummy, richly red leaves are the autumnal reward of growing Virginia Sweetspire. And winter brings more reward with exposure of the twigs and branches twigs and branches of lovely burgundy. A nice contrast to the starkness of ice and snow.
I live in the woods. I live in the mountains. I strive to keep my world as much as possible like it would have been a hundred, or more years ago, with plants that are native to this state. Sweetspire is one of the plants that is helping me stay happy up here!