A mounded woody plant with cornflower-blue flowers in late summer and fragrant, silvery-green foliage. Though bluebeard is technically a shrub, it should be treated as a perennial in the Midwest because it tends to die back in harsh winters.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
- Mixed border
- Small shrub (3-5 feet)
- Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 5
- Zone 6
- Zone 7
- Zone 8
- Zone 9
- Alkaline soil
- Moist, well-drained soil
- Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
- Early winter
- Mid winter
- Late summer
- Early fall
- Mid fall
- Late fall
Tree & Plant Care
Though it is technically a shrub, the plant should be treated as a perennial; dieback can occur in harsh winters.
Grown for its late summer blue flowers, plants reach 2 to 3 feet high and wide.
Do not cut back in fall; spring pruning promotes new growth and flowers. Cut back in early spring.
Best in full sun in well drained soil. Can die back in winter in wet, clay soils.
Best planted in groups for bigger flowering impact.
Disease, pests and problems
No serious problems
Root rot may occur in poorly drained sites.
Native geographic location and habitat
Of hybrid origin
Attracts birds & butterflies
Flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Simple, opposite leaves; lance-shaped, 1 to 2 inches long; margins can be entire to finely toothed
Blue-grey with silvery undersides; fall color is a buttery yellow.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Cornflower blue flowers borne in clusters (cymes) from the axils of the stem in late summer
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Clusters of tan capsules; ornamentally interesting in winter.
Blue Mist (Caryopteris x clandonensis 'Blue Mist'): powder blue flowers
Dark Knight (Caryopteris x clandonensis 'Dark Knight'): An upright habit grows 3 to 4 feet high and 2-3 feet wide, rich deep blue flowers
Longwood Blue (Caryopteris x clandonensis 'Longwood Blue'): a taller cultivar reaching a height of 3 to 4 feet high, violet-blue flowers
Petit Bleu™ (Caryopteris x clandonensis 'Minblue'): compact 24 to 30 inch tall with deep blue flowers