Deciduous to semi-evergreen shrub
Description: Foliage finely textured, lustrous dark green, aromatic when bruised; small gray, waxy coated fruit that persists through the winter
Habit: Grows 5 to 12 feet in height, with an equal spread
Culture: Prefers full sun to part shade; adaptable to a variety of soil conditions, poor, sandy, or heavy clay
Hardiness: USDA Zones 2 through 6
Origin: Northeastern North America
Attributes: Attracts birds; Showy fruits; Rain Garden; Drought tolerant; Deer resistant
Myrica pensylvanica is a deciduous to semi-evergreen shrub native to North America. It is found in the wild along coastal areas, many times within reach of the salt spray. It was called Candleberry by the early settlers in the seventeenth century who used it in candle making. Peter Henderson wrote in Handbook of Plants, 1890: "In New England, the wax which invests the berries is collected in considerable quantities. It is obtained by boiling the berries in water, when the wax melts and rises to the surface. Under the name of Bayberry tallow it is often used to make candles, either alone or mixed with tallow; it is also employed in soap making." Bayberry makes excellent hedges.
This species is dioecious, meaning a male and a female plant are both required for pollination and fruit set. Our Myrica pensylvanica plants are unsexed due to their immaturity; we recommend purchasing more than one plant to increase the likelihood of fruit production, including berries and seeds.
This plant will ship bare root. One year Myrica Pensylvanica seedling is approximately 12-18” tall.
Bare root planting tips:
~ If you can't plant immediately, store your Myrica Pensylvanica plant in a cool location and keep the roots moist or pot in a container with a nursery potting mix from your local garden center.
~ Before planting, let the roots soak for several hours as you prepare the site. You'll want to dig a large enough hole so the root mass can spread out and the plant is at the same soil level as when it was growing in the nursery.
~ Once planted, water it in well and wait a month before fertilizing. Mulching will help to maintain moisture and raise soil temperatures for faster growth.