Leucothoe fontanesiana- Drooping Leucothoe


General:  A suckering, multistemmed evergreen shrub with arching branches and long, pointed leaves. Graceful and fountain like thickets grow 3-6′ in height and spread.

Leaves: Alternate, evergreen and leathery, 2-5″ long and up to 1 1/2″ wide, tapering to a long point. Leave emerge bright green turning dark green in the summer. Some varieties mature to a bronze or purple color in the fall while others remain green.

Flowers:  Waxy, urn shaped, white flowers are borne on drooping spikes in the spring. Somewhat hidden by foliage.

Attributes:  Leucothoe is a good undergrowth evergreen for hiding leggy plants. Its often utilized in shade or woodland gardens for massing, grouping or to stabilize banks.


Hardiness:  Zones 5-8

Growing Conditions: Prefers acid, moist, well drained soils in partial to full shade. Not tolerant of drought or drying winds.

MaintenanceSusceptible to fungal leaf spots and develops them readily under stress. Root rot and mildew are also issues.

Transplanting: Easily transplanted in the spring.


Our Experience

Experience at Great Hill:

Leucothoe can be found in many shaded garden areas on Great Hill. Its habit, evergreen leaf and springtime flower add aesthetic appeal along paths, ponds and slopes. However, many, if not all of our plants have developed fungal spots to one degree or another. When a thicket gets particularly bad looking, we cut whole canes to the ground and they rejuvenate nicely over time.