Know Your Plants

know your plants Stewartia


Looking to bring some flower power to your landscape? The Stewartia genus has up to 20 species of gorgeous shrubs and trees. Most of them are from Asia and common throughout North America. Perhaps the most popular is the Japanese stewartia, which has ornamental bark to complement its summer flowers.

Most stewartia plants prefer acidic soil and partial to full sun. They need frequent watering, but the attention pays off with year-round interest. From their bark to their foliage and flowers, stewartias are natural beauties.

Did You Know?
A Japanese stewartia tree can grow as tall as 40 feet and as wide as 30 feet. 

Other Fun Facts About Stewartia

  • Stewartia may have gotten its name from a misspelling, when Carl Linnaeus named the genus in honor of John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute, in 1753 and received the name as “Stewart.”
  • The Japanese stewartia’s species name, pseudocamellia, means false camellia. Indeed, the flowers of this tree and others in the genus are similar to camellias.
  • Both stewartias and camellias are members of the Theaceae, or tea, family.
  • The peeling bark of the Japanese stewartia reveals rustic shades of orange, brown, red, and gray, keeping the plant plenty pretty in winter.

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