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Pieris 'Forest Flame'

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Kemper Code:  L720

Common Name: lily of the valley bush
Zone: 5 to 8
Plant Type: Broadleaf evergreen
Family: Ericaceae
Missouri Native: No
Native Range: None
Height: 4 to 7 feet
Spread: 4 to 7 feet
Bloom Time: March - April   Bloom Data
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: High

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Plant Culture and Characteristics

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  Uses:       Wildlife:   Flowers:   Leaves:   Fruit:
Hedge Suitable as annual Attracts birds Has showy flowers Leaves colorful Has showy fruit
Shade tree Culinary herb Attracts Has fragrant flowers Leaves fragrant Fruit edible
Street tree Vegetable   hummingbirds Flowers not showy Good fall color   Other:
Flowering tree Water garden plant Attracts Good cut flower Evergreen Winter interest
Gr. cover (<1') Will naturalize   butterflies Good dried flower     Thorns or spines

General Culture:

Best grown in organically rich, humusy, acidic, medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Soil preparation is the same as that for rhododendrons. Prefers a location sheltered from wind with some afternoon shade. Prune off spent flower clusters immediately after flowering.

Noteworthy Characteristics:

This hybrid Japanese pieris is a slow-growing, dense, upright, broadleaf evergreen shrub which typically grows 4-7' tall and as wide. Pendulous clusters (racemes) of lily-of-the-valley-like, white flowers (waxy urns) appear in early spring. Leaves appear in whorls with the new foliage emerging flame red (one of the most striking features of the shrub) and fading to a creamy pink before maturing in summer to a glossy, dark green. Although the flowers are followed by seed capsules which will persist into winter and are considered by some to be attractive, it is generally best to prune off the spent flowers immediately after bloom. Hanging clusters of bead-like, pink flower buds are set in late summer for the following year and provide some winter interest, contrasting well with the evergreen foliage.


Susceptible to dieback, desiccation and scorch in harsh winters, particularly when plants have not been properly sited in a location protected from wind. Lace bugs can do considerable damage to foliage, particularly in the Eastern U.S. Phytophthora (crown/root rot), nematodes, mites, scale and leaf spots are also occasional problems.


May be massed, grouped or grown as specimens. Shrub border, foundation plant, informal hedge or woodland garden. May be mixed effectively with other broadleaf evergreens such as rhododendrons and azaleas.

Missouri Botanical Garden, 2001-2011

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