Thursday, March 12, 2009

Late Season Blooming Shrub

Pieris japonica 'Amamiana' is a shrub commonly called Lily of the Valley Shrub. Because it doesn't get cold enough here to grow actual Lily of the Valleys, this is as close as we are going to get. It isn't fragrant*** like the original, but it is beautiful when it blooms this time of year. Many of these shrubs have a pink or red tint to the blossoms, but I love this pure white one in my Moonlight Garden in SJC. They are related to Azaleas and prefer shady, moist spots in the garden. I had planted one in Laguna that did not survive, probebly because the shade there is very dry. They are supposed to get to nine or ten feet tall, but I must admit I have never seen them more the three or four feet. I must admit I have never seen one growing in anyone's garden, but that may be because I have never noticed them out of bloom, which is what they are when most garden tours take place. I have two of them and will be interested to see how they do here over the years.

*** Editors note: after being questioned about the lack of fragrance I went out and got down and gave it a sniff test and yes, there is a fragrance and I'm sure when the shrubs get larger it is much more evident!

9 comments:

Karen said...

Love the white blossoms, agree that the pink looks a little goofy sometimes. They are a dime a dozen up here in the NW, so it probably takes an expert gardener like you to keep one growing in CA! Very fragrant here, wonder if that's climate-related too.

Gail said...

Wow on the 9 feet tall...they must need a wet environment like the Smokies! I have no luck with them..dry, sweet soil is not hospitable. They look good in your garden...I didn't know they hadn't any fragrance! gail

Sheila said...

Okay, now that I've said they haven't any fragrance I am going to have to go double check! I've never really noticed a fragrance like lily of the valley bulbs, but maybe I am missing something.

cindee said...

That is a striking plant(-: I have never seen one.

GardenJoy4Me said...

I have often wondered about this shrub .. it looks very pretty even without loads of fragrance .. that is why we grow roses ? LOL

HappyMouffetard said...

That is a lovely plant - if it has fragrance, even better!

Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...

I have lily of the valley (plants) but have not heard of the large bushes. I do enjoy my lily of the valley and the tiny bell-shaped flowers. Though I've heard that they smell lovely, I wouldn't know--they're so low to the ground I've never gotten down to find out! The bush sounds very nice!

Roses and Lilacs said...

It's a lovely shrub. I grew it when I lived in Alabama. I don't remember a scent. It's too cold here in IL to grow.
Marnie