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Genus Pieris (Andromeda)

Pieris Pieris japonica Photo/Illustration: Steve Aitken
pee-AIR-iss Common Name: Andromeda
The Pieris genus is made up of 7 species of evergreen shrubs from forested and hilly landscapes in the Himalayas, East Asia, North America, and the West Indies. They are grown for their attractive, glossy foliage, which is often colored when young, and their panicles of springtime flowers. They are frequently called Andromeda, which actually denotes a separate genus within the same family. Their small, glossy leaves are numerous, providing ornamental texture throughout the year. In late winter and early spring, they produce pendulous clusters of dainty, urn-shaped flowers, which resemble Lily-of-the-valley and cover the plant. 
Noteworthy characteristics: These neatly shaped, low-maintenance shrubs are suitable planted singly or en masse in woodland borders, foundation plantings, or rock gardens. Leaves may cause severe discomfort if ingested. These shrubs offer year-round beauty with their attractive leaves and profusion of delicate blossoms.
Care: Moderately fertile, moist but well-drained acidic soil, rich in organic matter. Full sun or light shade. Cut back dead or diseased wood in mid-spring.
Propagation:

Sow seed in containers in a cold frame in spring or autumn. Take greenwood cuttings in early summer, or semi-ripe cuttings in mid- to late summer and provide bottom heat. 


Problems:

Canker, dieback, Phytophthora root rot, lacebug, nematodes.



Species, varieties and cultivars for genus Pieris

Pieris japonica Pieris japonica
(Lily-of-the-valley bush, Japanese pieris, Japanese andromeda)
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Hardiness Zones: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

This neat, rounded shrub has given rise to many noteworthy cultivars. It grows to 12 feet tall and 10 feet wide, producing drooping clusters of delicate white blossoms in winter and spring. Use this shrub in a woodland, rock garden, container, or as a foundation plant.

no image available Pieris japonica 'Dorothy Wyckoff'
(Dorothy Wyckoff andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley bush, Japanese pieris, Japanese andromeda)
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Hardiness Zones: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

This compact, rounded shrub produces reddish-purple buds that first open as soft-pink then mature to white. It grows to about 5 feet high and wide, making it a superb specimen for a container or small garden.