Ceanothus americanus is a multi-stemmed, small shrub with ornamental, white fragrant flowers. The shrub tolerates shade and dryness and thick, woody roots help it to withstand periods of drought.
During the American Revolutionary War, the leaves of the shrub were used as a tea substitute, hence the common name New Jersey tea.
The shrub is beneficial to wildlife, providing nectar for hummingbirds and butterflies and seeds for songbirds.
For more information on this plant, visit the USDA PLANTS Database: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=CEAM