Deciduous shrubs or small trees with stellate pubescence. Twigs rounded; pith relatively large, continuous, with a network of firmer strands. Buds solitary, sessile, the lateral small, the terminal larger, rosy, acute. Leaf-scars alternate, clustered toward the tip, triangular; bundle-trace 1; stipule-scars none.

a.

Shrub to 3 m. high, on the coastal plain

1.

C. alnifolia

a.

Taller shrub or small tree, to 6 m. high, in the mountains

2.

C. acuminata

1. C. alnifolia L. Sweet Pepperbush. Shrub 1-3 m. high; twigs slender; terminal bud about 5 mm. long. Damp woods, on the coastal plain, Texas to Florida, north to Maine (Fig. 239).

Fig. 239. Clethra alnifolia

Fig. 239. Clethra alnifolia.

Fig. 240. Clethra acuminata

Fig. 240. Clethra acuminata.

2. C. acuminata Michx. White-Alder. A shrub or small tree to 6 m. high, with upright or spreading branches; twigs slender; buds tomentulose, the terminal 5 mm. long; fruit a persistent ovoid nodding capsule, 5 mm. long. Woods, in the mountains, West Virginia to Georgia and Tennessee (Fig. 240).