Seven-son flower, which is really a large shrub or small tree, produces white flowers in late summer. After the petals fall, the pink sepals remain giving the appearance that the plant is in flower again. The whitish-tan bark peels in strips and is striking against a dark background. Use as a specimen plant, back or the border, or in a naturalized area.
All Common Names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
- Mixed border,
- Small tree (15-25 feet),
- Compact tree (10-15 feet),
- Large shrub (more than 8 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7,
- Zone 8
- Acid soil,
- Moist, well-drained soil
- Dry sites,
- Alkaline soil,
- Clay soil
Season of Interest:
- Early winter,
- Mid winter,
- Late summer,
- Early fall,
- Mid fall,
- Late fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
Size and Form
15 to 20 feet high and 8 to 12 feet wide; upright form.
Tree & Plant Care
Prune late fall through very early spring as flower buds are formed in the spring.
Disease, pests and problems
No serious problems.
Native geographic location and habitat
Native to China.
Bark color and texture
Light tan with a light colored inner bark; exfoliates (peels) into long strips exposing the inner bark.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Simple, opposite leaves; 3 to 6 inches long; margin entire and slightly wavy.
Dark green from early spring into late fall; little to no fall color.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Small, white flowers late in season (September) in clusters of seven; several flower clusters grouped together.
When the flower petals drop in October, the long-lasting sepals turn an attractive, bright, rosy-pink color, making the plant appear to flower a second time.
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Small dry capsules, hidden among the pink sepals; not ornamentally important.