How to plant pieris flowers

Written by darci pauser
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How to plant pieris flowers
Pieris japonica produces clusters of delicate small flowers shaped like upside-down teardrops. (Lily of the valley on white image by Eva Floxsy from Fotolia.com)

Pieris japonica, also called lily of the valley, is a flowering shrub popular for ornamental landscaping. It is native to eastern Asia, and can be grown successfully in climate zones 5 through 8 with little care. The shrub is evergreen, providing lush colour throughout the year, and can grow up to 10 feet in height. Pieris japonica bears short-lived clusters of small white flowers in early spring or late winter. This early blooming time is considered advantageous in landscape design. New foliage and winter flower buds exhibit a pleasing reddish colour. Pieris japonica may be propagated from rooted cuttings or seed.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Pruning shears
  • Nursery pad
  • Pieris japonica seeds
  • 6-inch nursery pots
  • Slightly acidic potting soil
  • Peat moss
  • Spade shovel

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Instructions

    Cutting Propagation

  1. 1

    Cut a branch of fresh greenwood growth off an established pieris in the spring with pruning shears. Be sure to cut a branch with at least five nodes. Repeat for as many cuttings as desired.

  2. 2

    Fill the nursery pots with a slightly acidic potting mix. Place the cuttings in the nursery pots, cut-side down.

  3. 3

    Place a heated nursery pad on an indoor or greenhouse table away from direct sunlight. Set the pots on top of the nursery pad.

  4. 4

    Keep the soil moist and allow the cutting to grow for one month or until 5 inches of new growth has formed.

    Seed Propagation

  1. 1

    Fill the nursery pots 2/3 full.

  2. 2

    Place one pieris seed in each pot and cover it with 1/4 inch of soil.

  3. 3

    Water the soil and keep it moist. Keep the pot indoors or in a greenhouse until the plant grows 5 inches.

    Transplanting

  1. 1

    Cultivate the soil in a partial-shade planting area by digging down 6 inches with the spade.

  2. 2

    Amend the soil with a 4-inch layer of peat moss. Incorporate the peat moss into the soil with the spade.

  3. 3

    Dig a 6-inch hole and remove the seedling or cutting from the nursery pot.

  4. 4

    Insert the plant roots and surrounding potting soil into the ground, gently pat firm and water. Transplant additional plants 6 feet apart.

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