Andromeda – Plant Profile

Pieris Japonica
Other Common Names: Andromeda, Fetterbush, Pieris.


Description: Andromeda is an evergreen shrub with thick, glossy green foliage. New leaf growth can vary from dark red to light orange or mottled in color, depending on variety. Leaves change in color throughout the year, usually turning deep red or purple in the fall and early winter. In the early spring and late summer, it boasts long, dangling clusters of small, bell-shaped white or light pink flowers.

Planting and Growth: The best time to install is in the spring or fall. Water slowly and deeply until established. If the soil in the intended area is not very rich, work a thick layer of compost into it before planting. This plant does best in shady areas with morning sun and full shade in the afternoon. It tends to grow in a dense, compact mound, sometimes (but rarely) up to ten feet tall. Minimal pruning may be done for aesthetics, but otherwise, it is a low-maintenance plant.  If necessary, pruning should be done in late spring, after flowers have faded. A fertilizer application is recommended in the late fall or early winter to encourage earlier blooms in the spring.

Special Features: Deer resistant, shade-loving, low-maintenance, winter interest, flowers attract bees and other pollinators in the spring.

Complements: Other shade-loving plants like hostas, ferns and astilbe. Nursery Manager Meghan likes it in woodlines and shady back yard gardens or foundation plantings. It’s also a great addition to pollinator gardens.

Related or Similar Plants: Pieris, Leucothoe.