Click for previous Image Image 1 of 4 Callicarpa kwangtungensis Chinese Beautyberry

in flower

Callicarpa kwangtungensis

Chinese Beautyberry

Plant Type:


Callicarpa kwangtungensis – This is a most extraordinary Chinese Beautyberry laden with oceans of autumn amethyst-purple berries; indeed, the shrub in autumn is a mounded cloud of purple. Its leaves emerge with a dusky purple flush; the veins and stems artfully retain the dark purple color as the leaves turn green to mossy olive-green. The tissue of some leaves mix the olive with purple tones for a bronze-purple blend. The leaves are larger than those of the better known C. dichotoma and exceptionally beautiful all through the growing season. Imagine this placed with miniature golden conifers and “WOW” is achieved! The flame-shaped blades often pick up extraordinary autumn purple and pink tones in beautiful contrast to those leaves that retain green to greenish yellow color. Typical late summer axillary pink-lavender flowers are very showy against the foil of olive and purple leaves. These give way to the treasure that this shrub is in the fall garden usually in conjunction with the fall foliage show – just sumptuous. Undeservedly rare, Russell Stafford and I stumbled upon this amazing shrub at the Arnold Arboretum where it was a solid mass of purple in November. Certainly a doer in zone 6, it is probably a cut back shrub in the northern end of the range; this will not be an issue as it flowers and fruits on new wood. Unless sited in a really protected microclimate Callicarpa kwangtungensis appears to fruit too late to be a berry treasure in USDA zone 5 where it can get smacked by a hard frost but then again the flowers are beautiful against foliage that is extraordinary in color – though craving the opulent fruit display we're happy to grow it for the foliage attributes. Spring planting advised in northern reaches. Cutting grown.

From Rick T. (TN) on 8.25.2016: Just a quick note to let you know that Callicarpa kwangtungensis is all kinds of awesome. Very vigorous here in middle TN. It's already grown to three foot and put out an additional three sprouts. The deer haven't touched it but then they also haven't touched its native species cousin and cultivars which the literature says are deer candy. I guess my deer can't read. Anyway, thanks for offering it and I look forward to perusing the latest additions.


36-48 in


36-48 in


Lavender Pink


(5b)6 to 8
What is my hardiness zone?

Characteristics and Attributes for Callicarpa kwangtungensis

Season of Interest (Flowering)

  • Late Summer

Season of Interest (Foliage)

  • Spring / Summer / Autumn

Autumn Interest

  • Autumn Leaf Color
  • Fruit / Berries / Seed Heads

Nature Attraction

  • Deer Resistant
  • Honey Bees & Native Bees


  • Full Sun


  • Hedge
  • Border
  • Hedgerow
  • Massing
  • Collector Plant
  • Specimen
  • Foundation
  • Accent
  • Shrub Border

Growth Rate in the Garden

  • Moderately Fast


  • Draining
  • Fertile


  • China

Propagated By

  • Cutting Grown