Return to the Gardening in Shade Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Pieris floribunda

Posted by Betbear 4a (My Page) on
Fri, Aug 9, 13 at 19:09

I'm looking for a shrub that will be red or reddish (or have red leaf tips etc) in medium shade. This is under a few trees, gets some dappled sunlight and some reflected sunlight. I can add supplemental water, so moisture isn't a problem.

I was thinking about Pieris Floribunda (mountain andromeda.)

(Note: NOT Pieris Japonica - the two seem to be confused all the time!)

Anybody in Z4 or lower have experience with this shrub?

I've also considered smokebush, so any experience with that or other recommendations are appreciated. I don't want to plant anything that will die or green-out in the shade.
Thanks in advance.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Pieris floribunda

Pieris floribunda does not have the brightly colored new growth - that's P. japonica and the hybrids (some, not all). And it is only marginally hardy in zone 4. Smokebush is not hardy at all in zone 4 and needs sun to maintain any dark coloring. About the only thing I can think of that might work are perennials rather than shrubs - Actaea racemosa (used to be Cimicifuga) 'Brunette' or 'Black Negligee' or Ligularia 'Britt Marie Crawford'. These offer pretty dark (not exactly red) foliage and are very happy in shade. And all manner of dark leaved heucheras could work but these are small and many also "green" out in much shade.

Dark colored - red or purple - foliage in shade is not at all common and even less so with shrubs. And the limitations of your zone kind of decrease any possible selection further.

RE: Pieris floribunda

You might consider ninebark (physocarpus), reportedly winter hardy in your zone. Some varieties have reddish/purplish leaf coloration. I have seen 'Diabolo' hold the purplish color in dappled shade. 'Coppertina' has a brighter color, but I have no experience with how well it holds that color in shady conditions.

Here is a link that might be useful: Missour Botanical Garden: Physocarpus

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Gardening in Shade Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here