Peanut Butter Tree

12 11 2009




We moved into our new house last year in fall, most of the shrubs and trees had shed leaves by then. In front yard, a wonderful smallish tree caught my attention – It had pinkish buds with blue berry like fruits. Quite unusual I thought. In Summer around late July this tree started blooming – had thousands of small pink-white flowers that looked like Jasmine and had very strong aroma. Many people who visited us in summer wondered about this tree, they had never seen such thing.


And I kept looking…searched folia, USDA plant database, internet but couldn’t find the name.  All of a sudden, 2 days back, I landed on Petunia’s blog. I was jumping in joy to have stumbled on her page. Thank you thank you Petunia. There it is – It’s called Peanut Butter tree or Clerodendrum trichotomum or harlequin glorybower

More research on it –
USDA link is here -

Why is it called Peanut Butter Tree?
Internet tells me leaves of this tree have very strong pungent smell, when rubbed these leaves give out peanut butter smell. well, I never noticed before, I went to front yard for my own taste test, and yes, it does kinda smells like peanut butter.
Now that I remember about flowers, stamens of this flower do have strong PB like aroma. when stamens removed, flowers give out very sweet fragrance – earthy jasmine like.

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2 responses

17 11 2009

Hi- I’m catching up on the blog and just saw your note. So glad it helped identify your shrub. I had never seen one of these before! Nice to find another NW gardener, too. Paula

19 11 2009

Thank you Paula, I am regular reader of your blog, very inspirational. It’s been great to finally know about the tree in my yard, I went nuts looking for it and finally found on your blog. Thank you for sharing all the good information with us.


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