Sweet Pepper Bush – Clethra
Common names in Mexico: Jaboncillo; Jabon; Palo cucharo; Aguacatillo; bote; canelo; cuchara; chicoza; potillo; encino prieto; jicarillo; madrano;mameyito; palo cucharo.
Clethra mexicana is the species that grows prolifically in the overwintering monarch reserves in central Mexico. Clethra alnifolia – Maine to Texas; Clethra acuminata – Appalachian plateau; up to 70 species worldwide.
Clethra is a very attractive deciduous shrub whose shiny dark green leaves are alternate, simple and toothed toward the tips and reveal golden fall colors.