Pieris japonica 'RED MILL'

Pieris japonica
Pieris japonica 'RED MILL'
lily of the valley bush
SIZE/TYPE medium-sized shrub
LEAVES evergreen broadleaf
COLOUR OF LEAVES +multicoloured:green and red
LOCATION full to partial sun
SOIL TYPE acidic (peaty)
SOIL MOISTURE REQUIREMENTS evenly moist (dislikes drought)
USDA zone (lowest) 5   (down to -29°C)
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Evergreen broadleaf
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This variety of lily-of-the-valley shrub called Red Mill is one of the hardiest. Early in the spring it has tiny white flowers in pendent racemes, so loved by bumblebees. They are urn-shaped and small enough to enable bees suck their nectar, too. Soon after flowers new leaves appear. They emerge bright red first, turning mahogany, and mature into dark green in summer. Flower buds appear already in autumn of the previous year and decorate the plant throughout winter. Red Mill grows slowly into a compact, bushy shrub which looks especially great among other all-green shrubs and conifers.

Pieris does not require much maintenance. But if you wish to have a perfect plant here are a few suggestions: cut off spent flower racemes to prevent them from making seeds. During late spring and summer check the leaves 2 or 3 times for tiny spots on the upper sides – they manifest insect attack whose miniature worms are living inside the leaves and produce sticky sap on the underneath of the leaves. In such case spray it with a suitable insecticide – one dose is usually enough. In winter remove heavy and wet snow from the top of the plant to prevent its fragile branches from bending or breaking.

Ericaceous plants require soil that is light, acidic, and constantly moist (not wet). If your garden soil is too heavy do not dig a deep hole but make a mounded and wide bed topped up with a good mixture of peat, fine bark chips, and leaf (forest) litter. Keep the soil moist by mulching. Slow-release fertilizers for acid-loving plants are advised. It is hardy to about -29°C (USDA zone 5) and suitable for outdoor pots.

Last update 15-11-2016

  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
LARGE PLANTS over 150 cmspecimens, screening and hedging shrubs

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