Carolina Allspice

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  • Partial Sun to Full Sun (At Least 5 Hours of Direct Sunlight)
  • Mature Height 6 - 9 Feet
  • Mature Spread 6 - 9 Feet
  • Growing Zones 4 - 8
  • Use As A Thriller In Containers

Using native shrubs for informal hedging is perfect for encouraging wildlife into your garden. Carolina Allspice is a North American native shrub that has an enticingly spicy, sweet smell when it is in full bloom. Sometimes the fragrance is described as strawberry, banana, and pineapple mingled together. The glossy, green leaves are an effective backdrop for other summer-blooming perennials. Beneficial pollinators and hummingbirds all love the burgundy-colored flowers, which bloom in May just as the early spring bulbs are finishing.

Calycanthus floridus is also known by the name Carolina Sweetshrub or just Sweet Shrub and is native to the Southeast of the United States, but is hardy enough to grow in just about any USDA growing zone of the lower 48 states. Carolina Allspice has resistance to most pests and diseases and is not bothered by deer browsing. Although this is a native shrub, it is not a drought-tolerant shrub. It naturally grows in wet areas along stream banks and shaded woodlands. This shrub will tolerate seasonal flooding as long as the soil is well draining for the rest of the year. Plant this shrub close to an outdoor seating area or pathway, so that the scented flowers, leaves, and bark can all be enjoyed.

Carolina Allspice Shrub Care

Allspice shrub prefers a rich, loamy soil that is well draining. The pH can be either slightly acidic to slightly alkaline (6.0 - 8.0). Provide regular watering for the first 2-3 years as the shrub establishes its root system. Apply plenty of organic material to mulch the root zone in the spring. Shredded leaves, arborist chips, or compost is perfect. Mulching helps soil retain moisture longer and helps the roots stay cooler during the summer. Fertilize once a year in early spring as the new growth is beginning. A balanced, granular, slow-release fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 10-10-10 will support strong overall growth without encouraging too much foliage growth. Carolina Allspice will grow well in full sun or part shade. 

Seasonal pruning of Carolina Allspice is only needed to control the size or shape if necessary. Growing this shrub as an informal hedge is the best way to allow the natural fountain shape to emerge. Sucker growth will require removal to keep the shrub within bounds when planted near other shrubs. Any removed suckers can be used to propagate more bushes. Just plant the top 6 inches of the branch in a pot or directly where you want it to grow in the garden. Rejuvenation pruning is best done in late winter when the leaves are gone and the overall branch structure can be clearly seen. Cut the oldest and thickest branches to the ground to encourage fresh new growth.

Carolina Allspice Information

USDA Hardiness Zones: 4 - 8
Plant Type: Bushes
Light Exposure: Partial Sun to Full Sun (At Least 5 Hours of Direct Sunlight)
Mature Height: 6 - 9 Feet
Mature Spread: 6 - 9 Feet
Spacing: 6 - 9 Feet
Habit: Upright
Flower Color(s): Red
Flower Description:
Bloom Period: May
Foliage Type: Deciduous
Foliage Color(s): Green
Foliage Description:
Seasonal Interest: Spring Flowering
Watering: Low
Resists: Deer
Tolerates: Drought
Attracts: Bees, Birds
Container Role: Thriller
Uses: Borders, Containers, Specimen or Focal Point, Wildlife Gardens
Features: Attracts Pollinators, Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Low Maintenance, Native to North America, Continuous Blooming or Rebloomer
Common Name: Carolina Allspice
Other Name(s):
Scientific Name: Calycanthus floridus

Container Sizes

Please Note: The pictures below are to give a general representation of the different container sizes. The actual size/ages of plants are estimates and will vary based on; type of plant, time of year, last pruning & many other factors.

4.5 Pot

4.5" Pot
 Also Know As:
   4.5" Container

 Plant Age:
   ~ 6 months
 Plant Size:
   ~ 3"-6"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 4.5"H x 3.75"W
   1.42 quarts

Quart Pot

Quart Pot
 Also Know As:

 Plant Age:
   ~ 1 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 4"-8"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 4.75"H x 4.5"W
   1.50 quarts

2.5 Quart

2.5 Quart
 Also Know As:
   2.5 Quart Pot

 Plant Age:
   ~ 1.5 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 8"-12"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 6.5"H x 6.5"W
   2.20-2.30 quarts

#1 Pot

#1 Pot
 Also Know As:
   #1 Container
    1 Gallon
 Plant Age:
   ~ 2 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 10"-14"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 7"H x 7.75"W
   2.26-3.73 quarts

#2 Pot

#2 Pot
 Also Know As:
   #2 Container
    2 Gallon
 Plant Age:
   ~ 2-3 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 12"-18"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 9.5"H x 9.5"W
   1.19-1.76 gallons

#3 Pot

#3 Pot
 Also Know As:
   #3 Container
    3 Gallon
 Plant Age:
   ~ 3-4 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 12"-30"
 Pot Size:
   ~9.5"H x 11"W
   2.32-2.76 gallons

For more detailed information, please click here.

Plant Addict Guarantee (Included On All Plant Orders)

Plant Addicts guarantees your plant(s) will arrive happy and healthy, but the plant(s) are being shipped through the mail and accidents happen. If the plant is dead, has dried out roots or the incorrect item was shipped just notify Plant Addicts within 3 days upon delivery. We may ask for pictures but will try to make it as easy as possible for you. Please note plant(s) with damaged branches or wilted leaves will not qualify for this guarantee. Plants are very resilient and will rebound quickly when cared for correctly.

For information on how to care for you new plant please check out our guide. Guide: How to Care for Your New Plant(s)

Plant Addicts Warranty - 1 Year (Extra Purchase Required)

We encourage all plant lovers to purchase the Plant Addicts Warranty whether you’re new or an expert. There are many variables outside our control and yours that can cause the demise of your plant(s). Examples would be hungry animals, drought, poor soil conditions, over watering, disease, insects & many other factors. The Plant Addicts Warranty is a 1 year warranty protecting you from all the unknowns and will replace your plant if it moves on to the plant afterlife.

The warranty is purchased on a per plant basis and must be purchased at the same time as the plant purchase. We will cover 100% of the price of the plant but the warranty does not cover shipping cost. Simply let us know if your plant has died within one year of receiving it and we’ll get you a new one shipped out. We may ask for photos for documentation purposes but again we’ll try to make it as easy as possible.

For more information, please go to our Shipping & Returns page at the bottom of the website.

Guide: How to Care for Your New Plant(s)

Planter Shipping

Standard Colors: 2-3 business days

Special Order Colors: 8 weeks - this is due to the planter being custom made with the color(s) of your choice

Please Note: On special orders there can not be any cancellations

Plant Shipping

Time of Order:

Summer Shipping

  • If there is extreme heat we’ll delay shipping.  
    • We’ll have to review what areas the plants are traveling through along with your location

Once your plant is shipped you’ll receive an email with tracking information. Depending on the above criteria we’ll ship your plant(s) towards beginning of the following week from your order. We put together this helpful guide of what to do when you receive your plants in the mail.

It is important to know that all of our plants are clearly labeled for which growing zones the plant can survive in. The plants are thoroughly trialed and tested in every growing zone before we state the plant can grow in a zone. Again, our #1 priority is to ship the plants to you healthy and ready to thrive in your location. So we will do everything in our power to do so.