Plant of the Month: Radiance and Kaleidoscope Abelia

These evergreen shrubs are a dream come true for low maintenance gardeners. Both varieties are dwarf cultivars, averaging 2’-3’ tall and 3’-4’ wide at maturity. Their mounded shapes are perfect for foundations or group plantings.

In summer, these Abelias have creamy white flowers that pollinators adore. As an added bonus, Abelias are deer resistant.

Kaleidoscope Abelia

Kaleidoscope Abelia are a color changing wonder with variegated leaves that shift with the season. New growth emerges in spring in bright shades of green before turning buttery yellow in the summer and finally transitioning to a fiery red come fall.

Radiance Abelia

Radiance Abelia is no less colorful. New growth starts off green with creamy yellow variegation. As the leaves mature, they take on a more green and silver tone.

Abelias do best in full sun, at least 6 hours per day.

Moist, well-draining soil with a pH between 5.0 and 7.5. They are moderately drought tolerant once established.

Abelia may require occasional shaping to keep their mounds uniform. The best time to shape is during winter when the shrubs are dormant but the removal of a stray branch or two can be done any time.

Fertilize in spring and fall with an acidic fertilizer like HollyTone.