Prelude Japanese Pieris

Pieris japonica 'Prelude'

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Prelude Japanese Pieris (Pieris japonica 'Prelude') at Weston Nurseries

Prelude Japanese Pieris flowers

Prelude Japanese Pieris flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Prelude Japanese Pieris (Pieris japonica 'Prelude') at Weston Nurseries

Prelude Japanese Pieris in bloom

Prelude Japanese Pieris in bloom

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  18 inches

Spread:  18 inches

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  5a

Other Names:  Japanese Andromeda


Dramatically smaller than the species, this rare gem features prominent chains of white bell-shaped flowers atop a mounded plant, new foliage emerges tinged pink; perfect for the border or a rock garden, performs best in moist, organic and acidic soils

Ornamental Features

Prelude Japanese Pieris features dainty chains of white bell-shaped flowers hanging below the branches from early to mid spring. It has attractive dark green evergreen foliage which emerges pink in spring. The small glossy narrow leaves are highly ornamental and remain dark green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Prelude Japanese Pieris is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with a mounded form. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other landscape plants with less refined foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub, 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.

Prelude Japanese Pieris is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • Rock/Alpine Gardens
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Prelude Japanese Pieris will grow to be about 18 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 18 inches. 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 foliage 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.

Prelude Japanese Pieris makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a mass of flowers and foliage against which the thriller plants stand out. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight Soil pH Preference
Massing  Rock  Edging  Garden  Container 
Flowers  Foliage Color 
Ornamental Features