Little Heath Japanese Pieris
Pieris japonica 'Little Heath'
Pieris japonica 'Little Heath' foliage
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 3 feet
Spread: 3 feet
Hardiness Zone: 5a
Other Names: Lily of the Valley Bush, Japanese Andromeda
A smaller variety with showy chains of small white bell-shaped flowers and bright scarlet emerging foliage that matures to dark green with white edges; performs best in moist, organic and acidic soils
Little Heath Japanese Pieris features dainty chains of white bell-shaped flowers hanging below the branches in early spring. It has attractive dark green foliage edged in white which emerges scarlet in spring. The glossy narrow leaves are highly ornamental and remain dark green throughout the winter. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Little Heath Japanese Pieris is a dense multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.
This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Little Heath Japanese Pieris is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- General Garden Use
Planting & Growing
Little Heath Japanese Pieris will grow to be about 3 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 3 feet. It tends to fill out right to the ground and therefore doesn't necessarily require facer plants in front. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.
This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is very fussy about its soil conditions and must have rich, acidic soils to ensure success, and is subject to chlorosis (yellowing) of the leaves in alkaline soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution, and will benefit from being planted in a relatively sheltered location. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America, and parts of it are known to be toxic to humans and animals, so care should be exercised in planting it around children and pets.