(Lindera benzoin)
The Laurel Family (Lauraceae)

Large bush to short tree with alternate, deciduous, glossy leaves and gray-brown, speckled bark.


Low, deciduous woods, stream banks and swamps.

Interesting Facts: 

Named for its spice-like fragrance. Young leaves and twigs brewed into a tea; and dried leaves and drupes used as an allspice substitute. Camphor found in leaves and fruit utilized as a stimulant, antibiotic, astringent and natural breath freshener. Host to the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail and Spicebush Swallowtail butterflies and the Promethea Silkmoth.

Bright red drupe .375” long with a large seed and a peppery taste and scent, matures in fall.
Fragrant, small, yellow blooms appearing in axillary clusters before the leaves in early spring.
Wildlife value: 
Very valuable early spring pollen source for bees and other insects; drupes are eaten by at least twenty-four bird species and leaves occasionally grazed by deer and rabbit.
Leaf type: 
Wildlife value: 
Tree dimensions: 

Leaf length: 3.00-5.00 inches
Tree height: 6.00-20.00 feet

Where to find Spicebush on the Louisiana State Arboretum Trails:

WAB - Walker Branch Trail 16.0

Refer to our Live Map to locate this species and its interpretative signage on the trail system.