The Vitex Agnus-Castus Shoal Creek Tree: Better Known as the “Chaste Tree”

Vitex Agnus-Castus Shoal Creek Tree Southeastern Growers

With the ability to become a staple in any garden, the Vitex Agnus-Castus Shoal Creek Tree, also known as the “Chaste Tree”, is one of nature’s most beautiful flowering trees.

The Vitex blooms blue flowers throughout the majority of the year, sometimes even budding pink, purple, and white flowers. The Shoal Creek, the most popular variety of its genus, has blue-violet flowers that are largely winter-hardy. Therefore even when the weather drops in some regions – specifically in the Southern United States – the tree will remain lush and beautiful throughout the winter months.

The “Chaste Tree” is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub that grows upright. It measures up to 10-15 feet tall, and spreads at around the same width at 10-15 feet. The tree is largely used as an ornamental tree, although it has some shading and medicinal qualities as well. Within your yard, it works best as stand alone specimen, much like a centerpiece of your lawn. According to Southern Living, Vitex trees are also attractive in a row along a property lines or driveway.

The Chaste Tree is a native of southern Europe and central Asia, thriving best in the Mediterranean-temperate climate. It prefers prolonged periods of sunlight while well-drained, needing medium amounts of moisture. Once established the tree is very drought-tolerant, however it will grow faster with supplemental summer water. Unfortunately, It is not entirely low maintenance, but will require regular pruning to produce an attractive multi-trunked tree. Because it grows quicker than most trees, feel free to prune as much as you see fit.

The fruit and seed of the Vitex  are often used to make medicine for a variety of purposes. To this day, the chemicals produced by the tree are used to treat ailments affecting women. For example, medicines that treat menstrual irregularities, Premenstrual Syndrome, and menopause contain chemicals from this tree. Vitex Agnus-Castus also contains chemicals used to prevent miscarriages, and treat women throughout their pregnancies. In general, the Chasteberry was used to regulate and maintain the female reproductive system during periods of irregularities.

Herbs from this tree also have another historical relevance. According to Herb Wisdom, the fruit of the “Chaste Tree”, was used to control and suppress sexual desires. In Roman times, the herb was used by wives of soldiers to suppress such desires while their husbands were abroad at war. During the medieval ages, monks often used it as a food spice at monasteries for similar purposes, hence the Chasteberry’s other nickname, “Monk’s Pepper.”

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Gardening Essentials: Gardening Tools and Accessories for Comfortable Gardening

Home gardening and farming isn’t about creating the perfect garden, it’s also about enjoyment and relaxation. In order to enjoy your gardening and lawn maintenance undertakings, you need to be as comfortable as possible in the tasks you perform. If you’re forced into awkward, aching positions, then you will surely not enjoy the activity. Tools and supplies can also be quite heavy when carrying out larger projects. Heavy lifting, and extraneous work can lead to injury if not careful. In these cases, certain tools and accessories are available to make your gardening experience as smooth as possible. Below is a list of some necessary items to help protect and comfort you throughout your gardening experience.

Hat and Sunblock

Although this may seem like a minute detail, hats will protect your face from sunburns and skin damage. The American Skin Cancer Foundation suggests wearing a hat and sunblock every time exposed to sunlight for prolonged periods of time. Make sure to find a hat with proper coverage, that covers the entire head instead of just a portion of it. On blazing hot days when the sun is most potent, a hat will also protect your head from heating up, which can increase the risk of heat stroke.

Kneeling Pad

A kneeling pad will protect your knees after hours of gardening. If you are tending to a smaller gardening bed, a kneeling pad is a perfect way of providing comfort during a sometimes back-breaking task. Some kneeling pads can even convert into garden chairs, in case you choose to prune your plants without putting too much stress on your back.


Gardening gloves exist to protect a gardener’s hands from gardening hazards. If you’re working with tools, gardening gloves can prevent blisters and calluses from forming. Of course, gloves will also protect gardeners dealing with thorny rose bushes and plants.


Wheelbarrows will help you move soil and heavier object around your yard without too much hassle. If you’ve ever pot planted, you know how difficult moving filled pots can become. Wheelbarrows will help you avoid a great deal of trouble when undertaking larger projects.


Cloches are round or cylindrical clear instruments that protect and insulate young plants. According to Lee Reich of Gardening, gardeners and farmers often use cloches to extend vegetation as long as possible before farming season officially ends. They are either made of glass or clear plastic, allowing plants to absorb sunlight from within. The cloche also allows plants to retain humidity and moisture during warm summer days. This creates an optimal growing environment for your plant.
If you found this information useful and would like to learn more gardening and planting tips, check out our twitter @SEGrowers for more info. Thanks for reading !