Lindera angustifolia
Common Name: oriental spicebush 
Type: Deciduous shrub
Family: Lauraceae
Native Range: China
Zone: 6 to 8
Height: 6.00 to 8.00 feet
Spread: 3.00 to 5.00 feet
Bloom Time: March to April
Bloom Description: Greenish-yellow
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Leaf: Colorful, Fragrant, Good Fall
Fruit: Showy
Other: Winter Interest


Easily grown in average, consistently moist but well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Prefers a well-drained sandy soil.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Lindera angustifolia, commonly called oriental spicebush, is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub that grows to 6-8' tall and 3-5' wide. It is native to thickets and wooded areas on mountain slopes in China. It is perhaps best noted for its foliage which is attractive year round. Elliptic-lanceolate glossy green leaves (each to 4" long) with silvery undersides provide quality color during the growing season. Leaves turn showy shades of orange-yellow-red in fall. Although fall color eventual fades to a tawny-beige, the leaves remain on the shrub during winter providing additional interest. Some of the winter leaves persist on the shrub into early spring when the greenish-yellow flowers appear (March April). Flowers are followed by black fruits which ripen in fall (September-October).

Genus name honors Johann Linder (1676-1723), a Swedish botanist and physician.

Specific epithet means narrow-leaved.

Common names for this shrub include oriental spicebush (for its native range) and narrowleaf spicebush (for willow-like leaves). Leaves are processed for aromatic oil (oil used for making soap and machine oil).


No frequently occurring insect or disease problems.


Part shade locations in woodland gardens. Borders. Cottage gardens. Naturalize in meadows or open areas.