Callicarpa dichotoma 'Early Amethyst'

Plant Details

Common Name: Beautyberry
Type: Deciduous shrub
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 3 to 4 feet
Spread: 4 to 5 feet
Bloom Time: June to August
Blooms: Showy, Lavender Pink
Fruit: Showy Fruit
Features:  Attracts Birds, Showy Fruit, Native

This species of beautyberry is a rounded, deciduous shrub that typically grows to 4-5’ tall and to 6-8’ wide with slender, upright-arching branches whose tips may dip to the ground. Its best ornamental feature is its showy fall display of purple fruit.

‘Early Amethyst’ typically grows to 3-4’ tall and 4-5’ wide. Clusters (cymes) of small, lavender-pink flowers bloom in the leaf axils along the stems in summer. Flowers are followed by large clusters of bright, glossy, amethyst-purple fruits (each 1/8” diameter) which ripen in late summer and put on their best show through October. Fruits ripen earlier on this cultivar that with species plants, hence the cultivar name. Fruits persist beyond the point of leaf drop but not very far into winter. Fruits are attractive to birds.

Elliptic to ovate-elliptic, medium green leaves (to 3” long) with acuminate tips are borne along the stems in a single plane.


Quick Facts

Common Name :  Purple Beautyberry
Hardy Range :  Zones 5B - 8A
Spread :  35.88 - 72.00 in
Light :  Partial shade or partial sun - Full sun
Height :  48.00 - 72.00 in
Fall Color :  Not showy
Leaf Color :  Green
Fruit Color :  Lavender
Bloom Time :  Late summer
Bloom Color :  Lavender
Bloom Attributes :  Attractive flowers or blooms
Shape :  Weeping
Soil Condition :  Slightly alkaline
Growth Rate :  Average growth rate
Moisture :  Moist
Persistence :  Broadleaf
Family Name :  Verbenaceae (Vervain)
Type :  Shrub
Salt Tolerance :  Unknown

Plant Care

Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade.  The pH preference is an acidic to slightly alkaline (less than 6.8 to 7.7) soil.
Best flowering and fruiting is in full sun. Stems can become leggy in too much shade. Some tolerance for drought.

Flowers bloom on new wood.  Prune as needed in early spring. Most gardeners prefer to prune stems back to 6” in late winter to early spring each year. Such hard pruning tends to promote shrub compactness and good flowering. In harsh USDA Zone 5 winters, stems may die back to the ground in winter with new growth emerging from the roots in spring.

Best cross-pollination and resultant fruit production occur when shrubsare planted in groups or massed. 

No serious insect or disease problems. Some susceptibility to leaf spot, stem diseases and black mold.


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