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Edgeworthia Chrysantha or Chinese Paper Bush

Updated on November 4, 2015

Our Edgeworthia

I am not sure what causes their heads to droop but ours seem to do that.
I am not sure what causes their heads to droop but ours seem to do that. | Source

The Edgeworthia Chrysantha is a very interesting and unusual blooming bush

The Edgeworthia Chrysantha is a fun plant to own because it is unusual. We had admired this yellow flowering shrub in a friend's yard and were thrilled when Nancy and JC Cook showed up at our home with two plants. We planted them right in the front yard near the door and have thoroughly enjoyed watching them grow. Our friends were not sure what the name of the plant was so for the first year, we didn't know either. Another friend, Karen Link, was able to solve the mystery and identified the plant as Edgeworthia Chrysantha or Chinese Paper Bush. She is a florist and remembered reading an article about the Edgeworthia Chrysantha in a magazine that she had kept.

This same friend is the one who made the large photo below. She and her family were visiting the Riverbanks Zoo and Garden in Columbia SC and she took this photo just for me. Aren't friends great! I think of our friends every time I look at our plants.

Photo Credit: Photo by OhMe of her Edgeworthia chrysantha in Pendleton SC. Photos on this page are not to be copied without permission.

Edgeworthia Chrysantha at the SC Botanical Gardens at Riverbanks Zoo in Columbia SC - Photo taken by Karen Link and used with her permission

Edgeworthia Chrysantha at SC Botanical Gardens
Edgeworthia Chrysantha at SC Botanical Gardens | Source

What exactly is Edgeworthia Chrysantha or Chinese Paper Bush?

According to Wikipedia, Edgeworthia was named in honor of Michael Pakenham Edgeworth, an Irish born, amateur botanist and police chief. The Edgeworthia Chrysantha usually blooms in February and the flowers are very fragrant. I think they smell like Daffodils but my husband doesn't agree with me. The Edgeworthia Chrysantha is also known as a Chinese Paper Bush.

I had actually never heard either of these names until my friend informed us. I am not sure that I had actually ever seen this bush before either.

Flowering Shrub - Chinese Paper Bush

Edgeworthia chrysantha
Edgeworthia chrysantha | Source

Are you familiar with the Edgeworthia chrysantha? - Join the poll and let me know what you think of this yellow flowering shrub, the Chinese Paper Bush!

The flowers smell so good and that is why I am glad we planted it near the front door. It reminds me of Daffodils but no one else seems to think so. Everyone agrees that it smells good but not sure what it smells like. This plant has really grown a lot and fast. We might need to move it from its current location before it takes over my Hydrangeas.

Are you familiar with the Edgeworthia Chrysantha or Chinese Paper Bush?

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Edgeworthia Chrysantha in late spring - This is our Edgeworthia the first spring. It has really grown since this photo.

Edgeworthia chrysantha
Edgeworthia chrysantha

Enjoying this flowering shrub all year round

In late spring after the blossoms go away, the dark greenish blue leaves appear. The leaves stay through summer and fall. When the leaves go away, the bare branches are left and show the areas where the leaves were previously. The buds form right on the tips of the branches and at that time there is no greenery. So, you can see why I think this is such an interesting flowering shrub. It grows best in well-drained, acid soil and should be protected against harsh weather.I will have to remember to add a picture of what it looks like in the winter. It is truly an unusual shrub.

Flowering Shrubs

The Timber Press Encyclopedia of Flowering Shrubs
The Timber Press Encyclopedia of Flowering Shrubs

I don't personally own this book but do plan to purchase it. If you go to Amazon by clicking this product, you will be able to see inside it. I was very impressed with what I saw and think this would be an excellent book for any gardener.


A good Plant Identification book would have helped me to solve the mystery of this plant - This book has information about the Edgeworthia chrysantha

I looked through this book on Amazon to make sure that it told something about the Edgeworthia chrysantha and it even showed pictures of this interesting flowering shrub.

If you do plant one, I hope you enjoy it as much as we have ours. Remember to plant it where it has plenty of room to spread because it will need the space and fill it up faster than you think.

Edgeworthia chrysantha found on YouTube - check out these videos about the Edgeworthia chrysantha

Uses for this Yellow Flowering Shrub - Not only fun to look at but can also be very useful

Our Edgeworthia Chrysantha is only used for sheer enjoyment in our yard but according to Kew (Royal Botanic Gardens) Website, it has other uses:

  1. The bark of the Edgeworthia Chrysantha is used in making fine paper that is used for calligraphy.
  2. The bark is also used in making high quality Japanese Wallpaper
  3. At one time, the bark was used in making Japanese bank notes
  4. The flowers, bark and roots of this yellow flowering shrub are used in Folk Medicine because of it's anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. It is also used for the treatment of eye diseases.

The Foliage of the Edgeworthia Chrysantha is Very Pretty - This photo was taken in late May

Edgeworthia Chrysantha
Edgeworthia Chrysantha

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    • Melva Bennett profile image

      Melva Bennett 3 years ago

      I love fragrant plants and this is new to me, identified it from this page, thank you.

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 3 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      greenspirit, they really seem to multiply fast. We have been surprised so make sure you put them in area that you want grown up with them

    • greenspirit profile image

      poppy mercer 3 years ago from London

      Winter flowering shrubs are so wonderful in the garden. It's not commonly planted in the UK which is a real pity; I don't know why because it looks like it might grow well here. Having read your article I'm thinking that I'll search it out and start using it in my gardens.

    • profile image

      donosteo 3 years ago

      I'm about to try an Edgeworthia Chrysantha in Coral Springs, FL. I love to try out plants that might be difficult in my area, Zone 10B but at the edge of 11. I'll plant it where it gets midday shade but morning sun. When it's tall enough it should also get some late afternoon to evening sun. I'll let you know how it does.Spring brings my jasmine and gardenia into full bloom. My other specialties have been orchids, especially mounted in my trees; a few kinds of plumeria, many bromeliads and caladiums and various other flowering plants. My biggest challenges here have been roses, most especially because of the moisture and ensuing brown spot in rainy season and the sun's heat. My friend, who is a plant specialist and nursery owner, tells me we should only grow certain grafted roses because of their common susceptibility to nematode root attacks here. As a reference, even hibiscus stop blooming in our summer heat.Don Berry

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @anonymous: Thank you for visiting this page! This plant is so unusual. It is right by the front door so I love the smell of daffodils when entering the house.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Thanks Nancy, I've been enjoyong the fragrance and bloom on my walks in the Botanical Gardens for the last week or so and was eager to know more. I love this plant

    • GardenIdeasHub LM profile image

      GardenIdeasHub LM 4 years ago

      I really enjoyed your article about edgeworthia chrysantha. Thanks for the information.

    • lilblackdress lm profile image

      lilblackdress lm 5 years ago

      Lots of detail here.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I think I've seen this with the yellow flowers here in Florida. I had wondered what it was.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      I had never heard of Edgeworthia Chrysantha before reading this page. It is odd in that when it is flowering it has no leaves. Interesting indeed!

    • profile image

      Ruthi 5 years ago

      The Edgeworthia chrysantha is very pretty! I had not heard of it before now.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Thanks for providing the name and other information for an intriguing plant I have seen, but didn't know much about! Great Photos, too!

    • Momtothezoo profile image

      Eugenia S. Hunt 5 years ago

      I had not heard of this plant or seen one before...very pretty...thanks for the information on it!

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 5 years ago

      "High Five" as I learned a lot about Edgeworthia Chrysantha from this lens, a plant I don't even know that exist.Thanks for enlarging my horizon.

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 5 years ago

      I confess I am an ignorant, never heard of Edgeworthia Chrysantha.Thanks for teaching me something new! This is my type of lens from where I learn... It is a great looking plant...

    • profile image

      Joan4 5 years ago

      Beautiful plant and thanks for the education! This is a new one to me!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      loved reading about and seeing this very unusual shrub. thanks Nancy!!!

    • sittonbull profile image

      sittonbull 5 years ago

      Interesting ... had never heard of that plant!