Jetbead, Rhodotypos scandens
Rosaceae or Rose Family


Large shrub, to 6 feet tall. Leaves about 3 inches long, opposite each other, egg-shaped, long pointed, strongly veined, and double-toothed. Leaves turn yellow in the fall before dropping. Flowers with 4 pure white petals (very unusual for the Rose family whose members nearly all have 5 petals). Fruit a jet black berry, containing a single light brown, veined seed. Blooms in late spring.

A handsome shrub from eastern Asia with exquisite flowers. It has been cultivated since the late 1800's and has escaped from cultivation. It is now considered a noxious invasive and is spreading in many areas, including, unfortunately, the east slope of Wildwood Park.

In flower, this shrub is easily identified, as the 4-petalled, pure white flowers are unique in Wildwood. The double-toothed, strongly veined leaves are also distinctive. The flowers resemble those of mock-oranges (genus Philadelphus), of which both native and exotic species are known in Virginia, but not yet in Wildwood.

Autumn foliage

Autumn Leaves 

Fruits Seed