First Editions Love Child Sweetspire (Itea virginica ‘Bailteaone’)

First Editions Love Child Sweetspire

  • Exceptional Flowering Display
  • Long White Racemes Held Outside the Foliage
  • Honey Scented Bottlebrush Blooms in Spring
  • Flower Power Lasts for Weeks
  • Great Cut Flowers
  • Cute Compact, Rounded Shrub
  • Butterflies and Beneficial Pollinators Adore Them
  • Attractive Bright Green Leaves
  • Outstanding Burgundy Fall Color
  • Can Be Grown in Large Outdoor Containers
  • Seriously Easy-Care
  • Thrives in Sun to Partial Shade
  • Tolerates Moist Soil
  • Survives Brief Periods of Drought
  • Deer Don’t Prefer Itea

Add a delightful look to your landscape with First Editions® Love Child® Sweetspire (Itea virginica ‘Bailteaone’ PP 31,318). This is a superior modern cultivar of the beloved native shrub.

Enjoy these deliciously fragrant white flowers for many weeks to start your season in spring. Long racemes of blooms open up starting at the base and working up to the tip.

There may not be a more popular spring shrub for butterflies and honey bees! You’ll be absolutely enchanted with the amount of beneficial pollinators who come for nutritive nectar.

Do your part to create a critical ecosystem with high species diversity. These durable small shrubs make it easy, and you’ll get showy spring blooms and bold fall color, too!

Whimsically drooping blooms are held on the outside of the rounded compact balls, and make great additions to cut flower arrangements. Don’t forget to include some of the glossy green foliage as a marvelous contrasting counterpoint!

Their sweet fragrance envelopes your landscape to create a magical experience for you and your guests. Use them in areas that see high amounts of traffic…you’ll hear plenty of compliments!

All summer long, these tight little green balls decorate your foundation and patio plantings. As the season passes and nights grow cooler…watch as Love Child puts on another incredible ornamental display.

Lance-shaped leaves develop an intense dark red fall color. The undersides stay a bit lighter, and the top surface takes on a brilliant burgundy purple overcast.

This is a shrub to be proud of! From its native roots, to the prominent—and prolific—bloom and spectacular wine-red fall hues.

Grow them in the ground, or keep them in containers. Love Child Sweetspire is adaptable, and tolerates full sun or partial shade.

How to Use First Editions Love Child Sweetspire in the Landscape

You’ll find lots of places to add the charm and graceful style of these darling small shrubs. They fit perfectly in small space gardens, but can also be massed in large landscapes.

Create a low hedge by planting them two feet apart on center, measuring from the center of one to the center of the next. Stagger additional rows behind it in a zigzagging pattern to fill a wide, open area.

Use on slopes to control erosion. Make a splash in a long row that runs through full sun and partial shade conditions.

Renters don’t need to miss out on their fragrance and fall color! They make exquisite “Thrillers” in exterior containers for balconies or porches.

Try flanking a matched set of chic containers on either side of your front door. They look great beside a garden gate, too!

Run them as a special edging plant along a series of easy-care shrub borders. Plant them in front of Lilac, Viburnum, Yew, Rose of Sharon or a combination of your favorites from the extensive online catalog right here on

Give yourself something amazing to look at from your deck. Remove lawn and establish a mulched island bed.

Include Red-Twigged Dogwood, Ornamental Grasses, First Editions® Crème Brulée™ Potentilla and Love Child Sweetspire for a low-maintenance display. It will give you beauty all year-long without hassle or headaches.

And because Love Child Sweetspire stays small, it can be used in foundation plantings. Refresh your curbside visual appeal with their lovely good looks.

It can even handle sites that periodically get wet; and ones that grow dry on occasion. Tie your landscape design together with multiple Love Children planted throughout your plantings.

Tips for Care

Plant your Love Child where it receives full sun or partial shade. They need at least four hours of sunlight a day for flowering.

Although Itea is a tough, versatile shrub, give it slightly acidic, well-drained soil for best results. Pine bark or pine straw mulch spread annually over the root system will support their needs naturally.

Get the best performance with a moderate amount of water on a regular basis. This is especially true for container-grown plants that should not be allowed to dry out.

Fertilize with a formula for acid-loving plants in early spring. Follow label directions for application rates.

Wait to prune this little guy until the flowers are done. Then, give it a haircut if needed and deadhead the spent flowers.

Next year’s blooms will develop on this year’s growth, so don’t wait too long after they finish blooming. They bloom on old growth from the year before.

First Editions Love Child Sweetspire (Itea virginica ‘Bailteaone’) Details

Common name First Editions Love Child Sweetspire
Botanical name Itea virginica 'Bailteaone'
Plant type Deciduous
Hardiness zone 6-9
Growth rate Medium
Height 3 - 4 ft.
Width 3 - 4 ft.
Sunlight Full Sun, Partial Shade
Moisture Medium
Soil condition Well Drained
Pollinator-friendly Yes
Pruning time After Flowering
Flower color White