|Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture|
Clethra (ancient Greek name of the Alder, transferred to this genus on account of the resemblance of the leaves). Clethraceae. White Alder. Shrubs or small trees grown for their handsome spikes of white fragrant flowers appearing in summer.
Leaves alternate, usually serrate, deciduous or persistent: fls. white, in terminal often panicled racemes; petals 5,erect; stamens 10: caps. splitting into 3 valves, many - seeded. — About 25 species in Amer., E.Asia, Madeira. Only a few hardy deciduous species are generally cult.; valuable for their showy spikes of white fragrant fls., appearing late in summer. They grow best in a moist, peaty or sandy soil. Prop, by seeds, sown in spring in pans in sandy and peaty soil, and by greenwood cuttings under glass, growing best if taken from forced plants in early spring and placed in slight bottom heat; also, increased by layers and by division of large plants. Handsome when forced under glass.
C. monostochya, Rehd. &. Wilson. Allied to C. Fargesii. Lvs. cuneate, elliptic-oblong to oblong-lanceolate, glabrous or nearly so: racemes usually solitary; style appressed pilose. Cent. China.—C.quercifolia, Schlecht. Shrub: Lvs. obovate-oblong, tomentose beneath: racemes panicled. Mex. U.K. 38:23.—C. tinifolia, Swartz. Shrub: Lvs. oblong, entire, tomentose beneath: racemes panicled. Jamaica.—The last two are evergreen and hardy only in subtropical regions. Alfred rehder. CH
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- Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture, by L. H. Bailey, MacMillan Co., 1963