When looking for a plant with interesting winter characteristics, Heptacodium is a practically unknown large shrub with peeling bark. Often limbed up to make a multi-trunk small tree, strips and layers of cream, tan and brown on twisting and muscled trunks looks much like a mature crapemyrtle.
Heptacodium is also known for its large clusters of pleasantly fragrant white flowers from late August through October. The flowers are a good source for nectar for butterflies in the fall season. As the petals drop off, the rose-colored sepals and small purple fruit are left behind to make a nice display until winter.
Also known as seven-son flower or hardy crapemyrtle, Heptacodium tolerates hot and dry conditions, a wide range of soil types and it grows best in a sunny site.
Heptacodium offers fall and winter interest in the landscape. Use as an accent or screen. Above two photos courtesy of Missouri Botanical Garden Plant Finder: Chris Starbuck
Common Name: Seven-Son Flower
Botanical Name: Heptacodium miconioides
Blooming Period: Late summer and early fall
Type: Large shrub or small tree
Size: 15 to 20 feet tall and 10 feet wide
Form: Fountain or oval shaped
Exposure: Full sun to partial shade
When to Prune: Winter or early spring
In Your Landscape: Use in a shrub border or woodland garden, or as a focal point or lawn specimen.