potted Teaberry 'Winter Splash'  wintergreen variegated leaves, red berries pink and green variegation on wintergreen teaberry with red berries in winter Gaultheria Winter Splash is a Wintergreen with variegated pink and green leaves A bell shaped white blosson on a vairegated wintergreen winter splash
potted Teaberry 'Winter Splash'  wintergreen variegated leaves, red berries pink and green variegation on wintergreen teaberry with red berries in winter Gaultheria Winter Splash is a Wintergreen with variegated pink and green leaves A bell shaped white blosson on a vairegated wintergreen winter splash

Images Depict Mature Plants

Variegated Wintergreen Teaberry 'Winter Splash'

Gaultheria procumbens 'Winter Splash'

Gaultheria procumbens is a small native groundcover shrub that goes by many names; Teaberry, Boxberry, and Wintergreen being some of the most common names. The edible, spearmint flavored berries are light red and scarlet, perfect for holiday decorations. Winter Splash is the only variegated wintergreen plant available, adding pops of white and pink to the festive displays of color.

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Variegated Teaberry (Gaultheria procumbens) Wintergreen 'Winter Splash' Shrubs

Teaberry Plants are a small groundcover shrub native to eastern North America. 'Winter Splash' is the only available variegated Gaultheria procumbens variety.

Gaultheria procumbens have been found as far north as Newfoundland in Canada and as far south as the state of Alabama in the US. It's a favorite plant for holiday decoration because it keeps its light red berries and its green leaves all throughout the winter. Sometimes the leaves on 'Winter Splash' change from greens and whites to pinks and plums in the winter. Its berries, the teaberry, is an edible berry, but we don't recommend eating it in large quantities because of the the wintergreen oil it produces. The flavor of the teaberries and the scent of the wintergreen oil is very similar to peppermint or spearmint, even though it is not a part of the mint family.

The cultivar 'Winter Splash' features stunning variegated leaves, creating a dynamic splash of color to shaded ground in your garden. The leaves have colors ranging from dark green to cream white, with flecks of light green throughout. Also, the leaves turn pink in winter, rather than the traditional burgundy of other Gaulthera procumben varieties.

In the spring, teaberry plants produce tiny, white, bell-shaped flowers, which make way for the edible minty berries in late summer. They spread more often through duplication via the rhizomes in their root system, rather than through seed dispersal.

Wintergreen teaberries are a favorite of deer, chipmunks, squirrels, and other woodland creatures native to North America. If you plan to plant them as a low garden border, we recommend taking precautions to prevent deer from trampling into your garden to get to them.

Gaultheria procumbens goes by many, many names - Eastern teaberry, Wintergreen, boxberry, Canada tea, hillberry, grouseberry, deerberry, groundberry, gingerberry, creeping wintergreen, star berry...


Hardiness Zone: 3-8
Mature Height: 3 to 8 inches
Mature Width: 1 to 3 feet
Classification: Evergreen groundcover
Sunlight: Part shade to full shade
Habit: Low growing, spreading
Flower Color: White, small, bell-shaped flowers
Berries: Edible, light red to scarlet in color
Foliage: Variegated green in spring, summer, and fall, slightly pinkish in winter, oils in leaves have a minty aroma
Soil Condition: Prefers slightly acidic, well-draining soil
Water Requirements: Evenly moist, low maintenance
Uses: Borders, rock gardens, indoors, container gardens, shaded and wooded gardens, banks
Temperature Thrives in cooler temperatures, needs more shade in places with hotter summers
Growzone: 3-8 Variegated Wintergreen Teaberry 'Winter Splash' Hardiness Zone 3-8

How to Care for Variegated Wintergreen Teaberry 'Winter Splash'

When purchasing your Wintergreen 'Winter Splash' (Gaultheria procumbens), make sure to read the recommended care instructions.

What is the best soil for Gaultheria procumbens?

What is the best soil for Gaultheria procumbens?

American wintergreen plants prefer a slightly acidic soil. When planting, you can amend your soil with peat moss and organic matter to lower the pH slightly and allow the roots space to establish themselves. Amending your soil will also ensure proper drainage so that the roots do not sit in water. We recommend using an enriched soil such as Espoma Organic Potting Mix or Foxfarm's Ocean Forest Potting Soil.

How much sun is right for Eastern Teaberry?

How much sun is right for Eastern Teaberry?

Gaultheria procumbens needs cool shade to thrive - it cannot tolerate direct light unless it is for a very short part of the day (morning preferably). This makes it a great groundcover choice for north or east facing gardens. An area with partial shade will encourage the most berries to grow. It can actually tolerate full shade as well, making it a good choice for shaded garden borders, container gardens or indoor pots.

When should I prune my Wintergreen plants?

When should I prune my Wintergreen plants?

Teaberry plants can either be pruned in early spring down to the wooded branches, or immediately after flowering. Some people like to make a tea out of the leaves and twigs - make sure to save your cuttings if you'd like to try this spearmint-flavored tea.

How much water does Gaultheria procumbens need?

How much water does Gaultheria procumbens need?

Wintergreen plants prefer evenly moist soil. Water every few days if planted outside until the plant is well established, then only once or twice a week as needed. In planted indoors, water when the top 1/2 of an inch feels dry to the touch (you can check by pressing your index finger into the soil up to the first joint).


Frequently Asked questions

Are wintergreen berries edible?

Does Gaulteria procumbens need fertilizer?

Are Wintergreen plants pet-safe?


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