Fall Bling – Callicarpa!

Callicarpa bodinieri ‘Profuson’, the shrub you never knew you needed! Why? Because of its fall interest of course and, more specifically, the berries that emerge in the fall and can remain into early winter. They are like jewelry for plants that everyone oohs and ahhs over. The berries really do look like beads and they grow in impressive clusters around the branches. They stand out during the dreary late fall and winter landscape with their gorgeous violet purple color. The light purple golden leaves that form in the fall look pretty up against the striking berries but the real show begins when the leaves drop and the berries on the bare branches remain. This is when they (the berries) truly become the star of the show. The branches can be cut and added to your indoor bouquets or left to enjoy in your garden. The birds will appreciate the berries when they are foraging for food in the winter – and who doesn’t like to help out our winged friends?

If you would like a smaller shrub, (the profusion can grow up to10 feet tall!) then the callicarpa early amethyst might be more your type. As the name suggests it bears fruit a little earlier in the fall. It has a pleasant mounded form with long leaves on the dipping branches; pink flowers in the summer are followed by violet berries in September. Its manageable size (2-4 feet) and ease of care make it a popular choice for gardeners.

Hardy to Zone 5 these deciduous shrubs prefer full sun with rich well drained soil. Plant them with lavender, echinacea, and crocosmia (no coincidence we carry all of these at Kato’s!) to create a lovely multi-season landing spot for the birds and the bees!