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- Hearts-a-Bustin' - Euonymus Americanus The Hearts-a-Bustin' plant is unique in appearance with thin stems that droop
Euonymus americanus - Hearts a Bustin Shrub The Hearts-a-Bustin' plant is unique in appearance with thin stems that droop. This native shrub has a whitish flower color and showy berry fruits which have a similar look to strawberries when viewed from a distance. In fact, many times it is mistaken for a strawberry bush. Other names for it are fish wood, burning bush, Brook euonymus and wahoo. The seeds and red capsules are the reason for the "burning effect". It's reddish purple husks open up and burst forth with bright orange seeds when taking a closer look. Five greenish-yellow petals occur on it. Hearts-a-Bustin blooms in spring. The foliage has a good fall color with leaves of vivid green changing to a yellow and pink color. Although spring and summertime are uneventful for this plant, fall and winter cause the bright scarlet, warty fruits to grow profusely. Leaves are ten centimeters long with an almost leathery texture. It usually grows up to five feet tall with a spread of five feet. Petals are almost triangular. Easy to grow, it requires light to full shade. When grown in full sun it will be full, colorful and sprout berry-filled Holly. Large shrubs and trees provide ample shade and a good spot to grow for the Hearts-a-Bustin'. Deer love to eat this interesting plant while birds enjoy it immensely as well. The well established plant is highly drought-tolerant and may also be pruned heavily although cutting is not necessary except to trim to size. It may be pruned as long as it's in leaf but winter is considered the best time to trim it. Soil should be well-drained, slightly acidic and humus-rich. Use it for landscaping or even xeriscaping which is an environmental art in itself that is gaining in popularity. The plant has a different look from others as it seems as if it came from another world. Rarely seen and not well-known by gardeners or landscapers, this is where it's appeal lies. It would add a different look to any area it's planted in and would definitely stand out among the rest. Any visitor may want to walk closer to examine this lush plant with it's immense, strange beauty. The plant lover may never tire of it plus it's not aggressive. As a hardy plant, it may survive freezing temperatures. It's surprisingly easy to grow under differing conditions which makes it great for beginners.