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Pieris japonica

Pieris japonica (Thunb.) D. Don ex G. Don

 

Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassMagnoliopsidaDicotyledons—plants with two initial seed leaves
SubclassAsteridaeA large class that encompasses asters
OrderEricalesTea, persimmon, blueberry, Brazil nut, azalea, many others
FamilyEricaceaeHeath or heather family
GenusPierisAndromeda or fetterbush
SpeciesjaponicaOf or belonging to Japan, Japanese

About plant names...

Japanese andromeda is native to China, Taiwan, and Japan. It is not found in the wild in North America, though it and its many cultivars are popular in gardens.

Plants: An evergreen shrub or small tree 3-13' (1-4 m) in size, usually less than 6½' (2 m). Twigs are hairless, and easily broken.

Leaves: Alternate, unlobed (simple), shiny, dark green, leathery leaves. The leaves have fine serrations, and are oblanceolate to obovate-oblong. Young leaves are orange-bronze.

Flowers: Flowers are abundant, forming drooping clusters up to 6" (15 cm) around. Individual flowers are white, about ¼" (6.3 mm) long, and resemble small inverted urns. They look very similar to blueberry flowers, to which they are loosely related. The tip of each flower has 5 small lobes that spread outward. (Cultivated varieties are available in shades of pink as well as white.) Flowers appear from March to April.

Fruits: Brown capsules with five valves are visible year-round. Each capsule is oval in shape, and about ⅛" (3.2 mm) long.

Edibility: Poisonous Skull & Crossbones Leaves and flower nectar contain andromedotoxin, which can cause death to people or animals. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abnormal heart rhythms, and headache.

Online References:

Pieris japonica at the Missouri Botanical Garden

Pieris japonica on plants.ces.ncsu.edu

Pieris japonica on hvp.osu.edu

Pieris japonica at the University of Connecticut Plant Database

Pieris japonica on plantfacts.osu.edu

Pieris japonica on woodyplants.cals.cornell.edu

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

6/14/2017 · Garden in the Woods, Framingham, MA

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/7/2012 · Ladew Topiary Gardens, Monkton, MD
≈ 10 × 13" (26 × 32 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/7/2012 · Ladew Topiary Gardens, Monkton, MD
≈ 16 × 22" (41 × 56 cm)

Pieris japonica description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 18 Jul 2017.

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Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/7/2012 · Ladew Topiary Gardens, Monkton, MD
≈ 5 × 3½" (13 × 9.2 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/23/2015 · Willard Brook State Park, MA
≈ 6 × 4" (15 × 10 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/7/2012 · Ladew Topiary Gardens, Monkton, MD
≈ 10 × 8" (25 × 20 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/29/2017 · Willard Brook State Park, Ashby, MA
≈ 5 × 3½" (13 × 8.7 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/23/2015 · Willard Brook State Park, MA
≈ 6 × 4" (16 × 10 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/23/2015 · Willard Brook State Park, MA
≈ 6 × 4" (16 × 10 cm)

Pieris japonica (Japanese Andromeda, Lily-of-the-valley Bush)

4/29/2017 · Willard Brook State Park, Ashby, MA
≈ 10 × 6" (24 × 16 cm)

Range: Zones 4b-8:

About this map...