Saturday, October 2, 2021

History Blooms at Monticello - Virginia Sweetspire

Virginia Sweetspire (Itea virginica)

This handsome North American species is native from New Jersey south to Florida and Louisiana. It was introduced into cultivation in 1744 and was listed in Philadelphia nurseryman John Bartram’s catalogue of 1783. 

Three years later, Jefferson, who was living in Paris at the time, requested Itea from both John Bartram, Jr. and Richard Cary of Virginia. Jefferson also included Itea virginica in his book, Notes on the State of Virginia. Its outstanding fall color is its greatest attribute, and a cultivar, ‘Henry’s Garnet’, received the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s award of merit.

For more information & the possible availability for purchase