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Common Name: Creambush
Holodiscus discolor is a deciduous shrub that can grow up to 3.00 metres tall.
It has edible, medicinal and miscellaneous uses.
Western N. America.
Woods and rocky places in California[
]. Streambanks and moist woods, canyons and hills from valleys to around 2,100 metres[
Succeeds in a good loamy soil that does not become too dry in summer, in full sun or light shade[
A fast-growing plant[
], it thrives in thin woodland[
A very ornamental plant[
], when fully dormant it is hardy to about -15°c[
], though the young growth in spring can be damaged by late frosts[
The flowers emit a perfume similar to meadowsweet[
Fruit - raw or cooked[
]. Small and dry[
The seeds are a blood purifier[
]. An infusion has been used in the treatment of smallpox, black measles and chickenpox[
The blossoms have been used in the treatment of diarrhoea[
The inner bark is tonic[
]. An infusion has been used as an eyewash[
]. The bark can be dried, powdered and then used with oil as a dressing on burns[
A poultice of the leaves has been applied to sore lips and sore feet[
]. A powder of the dried leaves has been used as a dressing on sores[
]. A decoction of the leaves has been used in the treatment of influenza[
Wood - very hard. Used for making small tools, roasting tongs etc[
]. It does not burn easily[
The seed requires 4 months stratification at 4°c. It is best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. Stored seed should be sown as early in the year as possible. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel, mid summer in a frame. Can be difficult[
Layering in spring. Easy[