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 CharacteristicsThese 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.
CareModerately 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.
PropagationSow 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.
ProblemsCanker, dieback, Phytophthora root rot, lacebug, nematodes.