Ceanothus americanus – NEW JERSEY TEA

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Tidy little shrub with massive flowering time in early summer, white fragrant flowers attract throngs of pollinators. Root was used as tea substitute in American Revolutionary War times (Boston Tea Party). This small shrub is highly recommended for garden use, it looks great in the front of shrub border or with shorter native perennials and grasses (Asclepias tuberosa, Aster novi-belgii/Aster dumosus, Coreopsis, Dalea purpurea, Echinacea purpurea, Penstemon, Sporobolus heterolepis, Schizachyrium scoparium etc.). Due to it's dense habit it can be successfully used as ground cover, especially in dry rocky spots. The roots have been used as blood thinner. It is one of the very few non-legume plants, that can fix nitrogen (which is useful in a disturbed site or shallow soil).

 

Blooming time: May–July.

 

Size: 3’ high x 3’ wide.

 

USDA zones : 3 to 9

 

Culture: Sun to half sun, drained soils, soils with some content of rocks, sandy soils, shallow rocky soils. Heavier soils should be improved by adding gravel and sand (dig hole 2 times bigger than plant container or slightly bigger, add gravel, sand and mix well).

 

Moisture Needs : dry, medium-dry, medium. Very drought tolerant plant.

 

Origin: native plant to Eastern and central North America, naturally in dry open woods, thickets or dry prairies

 

Deer/rabbit resistant : young plants need to be protected, because they are grazed by deer and rabbit. Adult plants are safe. Elk, deer, wild turkey, bobwhite quail or cattle may graze on this shrub.

 

Attracts Butterflies or Pollinators : awesome pollinator plant for native bees, wasps, flies, beetles, hairstreak butterflies and other pollinators. Host plant for caterpillars of several moths, azure butterflies and skippers.

 

Attracts Hummingbirds : no, but attracts small birds

 

Pot Size: 3.5" perennial pot (1.22 pt/580 ml)