Euonymus americanus, Strawberry Bush

Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic 

One of the few “good” Euonymus, this native* shrub gives a spectacular show each fall. The raspberry color husks of the seed capsules burst open to reveal DayGlo orange covered seeds, hence the common name Heart’s-a-Bustin’. This surreal effect is fun to show children and adults!

Print Version: Euonymus americanus, Strawberry Bush

Euonymus americanus, Strawberry Bush Berberis thunbergii - Japanese Barberry, Euonymus alatus - Winged Burning Bush, Nandina domestica - Heavenly Bamboo, It is native to DC and, in PA, is mostly concentrated along the southeastern border. It is common in the Piedmont and Coastal Plains of DE and VA and infrequent in the VA mountains, Hardiness: USDA Zones 6-9, Use as hedge or in shade gardens, Water Requirements: Moist, Light Requirements: Partial Shade, Soil Requirements: Slightly acidic, well-drained, Seeds eaten minimally by turkey and songbirds, Therapeutic uses; fruits may be harmful if eaten, Deer occasionally-to-frequently severely damage (may need protection if deer are overpopulated), Tolerates clay soil, full shade (but fruits best in light shade), wet conditions, and Black Walnut; susceptible to Euonymus scale and crown gall, Spreads by rhizomes; also, if stem nodes touch the ground, they may develop roots, Bright green bark on twigs, darker bark on trunk, Leaves become dark red in fall, Unique red fruits resembling strawberries open to reveal orange-red arils (the seed coverings) that dangle from the open capsules, Inconspicuous green flowers from May to June, Oval, bright green leaves, 3 inches long, Airy, multistemmed deciduous shrub

Learn more about other Mid-Atlantic plants: Tried and True Plant Fact Sheets.