Georgia bush-honeysuckle also called mountain bush-honeysuckle is a fast growing, eastern U.S. native found in the southern Appalachian Mountains in moist wooded areas and woodland edges. The mounding habit and arching stems produce small clusters of yellow trumpet blooms in July and August. New growth emerges with a bronze-red foliage, which later turns green then to a lovely red in the fall. Adapts to most soils and is drought tolerant when established.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
All Common Names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- North America
- Mixed border,
- Medium shrub (5-8 feet),
- Small shrub (3-5 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7
- Alkaline soil,
- Dry soil,
- Moist, well-drained soil
Season of Interest:
- Late spring,
- Early summer,
- Early fall,
- Mid fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
Size & form
A low growing, mounded shrub reaching 3 to 4 feet high and wide.
Tree & Plant Care
Grows well in part shade to full sun. Found along wood edges.
Adaptable to wide range of soil pH but prefers soils with organic matter to retain moisture.
Does not tolerate wet soils but tolerant of dry soil once established.
Plants tend to sucker.
Benefits with a light layer of mulch to retain moisture.
Prune unwanted suckers.
Disease, pests, and problems
Disease, pest, and problem resistance
Drought, deer resistant
Native geographic location and habitat
Native to eastern U.S..
Found along roadsides and moist wooded areas in southern Appalachian Mountains.
Attracts birds, pollinators, or wildlife
Flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Bark color and texture
Gray-brown twiggy stems.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Opposite, 2 to 3 inch long, oblong leaves , pubescent on both top and bottom.
New foliage is a bronzy-red turning dark green and yellow-red in autumn.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Lemon-yellow, 1-inch long panicle (cymes) appear in late spring to mid-summer.
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Dehiscent fruit capsule; not ornamentally important.
Cultivars and their differences
Kodiak® Georgia bush-honeysuckle (Diervilla rivularis 'SMNDRSF') : A series of tough growing, 3 to 4 feet high and wide shrubs for sun or shade. Foliage is dark burgundy to red.
Summer Stars™ Georgia bush-honeysuckle (Diervilla rivularis 'Morton'): A Chicagoland Grows™ Introduction, compact habit reaching 3 to 4 feet high and wide. Dark green foliage, lemon-yellow summer flowers, wine red fall color.