Monday, June 9, 2014

Name this Plant....Please.

 To one side of our driveway sits a rather tall shrub.  And by the looks of things, you can just tell that it has seen better days.  When we first moved in late last summer, I thought for sure that it was some kind of magnolia.  I waited this spring for it to bloom and to my dismay, nothing happened.  Then the leaves began to emerge, followed a few weeks later by these springy white flowers. 

 The leaves are handsome enough but otherwise the shrub is rather unremarkable.  The flowers (if you can consider them flowers) have no detectable scent and the leaves just turn brown and fall off during the autumn. 

At this point, I'm left with two basic questions - 1) What is this plant?  2) More importantly, why on earth would anyone grow it?


  1. White Fringe Tree (Chionanthus virginicus)

    The tree is native to eastern North America so, to me, it's incredibly valuable in its ecosystem. The flowers are so delicate and the foliage is pretty. It's considered threatened in Ohio and endangered in Florida.

    Birds will eat the fruit and insects utilize the pollen.

  2. We had one planted and it is very attractive. However, ours looks like a tree and is not bush like. Perhaps if you trim it and prune it, it will have a better form.

  3. Yes, Fringe tree. I just purchased 2 at our arboretum's annual tree sale. There are quite floriferous cultivars: 'Spring Fleecing' is a male cultivar that covers itself in white flowers very spring, 'Tokyo Tower' is from Japan and has a more upright habit with many, many flowers. They're quite beautiful trees, on my top 10 list of native must-have trees.

    1. Oh wow! I just googled it! Who would have thought that it was the same tree. Now I just have to figure out how to get it bloom to the max.