Glossy Abelia
(Abelia x grandiflora 'Frances Mason')


Plant Description:

Glossy Abelia is an evergreen or semi-evergreen sprawling shrub with arching stems and fine-textured foliage that reaches 6 feet tall and wide.  Many cultivars are available in the nursery trade including ‘Frances Mason,’ which is more compact reaching 3-4 feet tall and wide.  The yellow-green foliage develops a nice gold or bronze color that tends to stand out among other plants in the landscape.  Clusters of small, white (tinged pink) tubular flowers are attractive to butterflies.  Other cultivars vary in size and foliage/flower color, some with variegated leaves and/or darker pink flowers.

Mature Size:     3 – 4 feet

Growth Rate:     Moderate

Plant Habit:     Upright/Spreading Vase-shaped


Ornamental Characteristics & Uses: 

Foliage Color:     Yellow/Green, Glossy

Flower Color:     White (Tinged Pink)

Bloom Time:     Spring – Fall

Attracts Wildlife:     Butterflies

Uses:  Container; Shrub Border; Hedge; Foundation Plant; Specimen

Growing Requirements:

Cold Hardiness Zone(s):     6-9

Exposure:     Full Sun; Partial Shade

Water Needs:     Moderate

Soil Tolerances:   Prefers moist, well-drained soils;                     moderately drought tolerant

Soil pH:     Acidic to Slightly Alkaline

Maintenance:     Easy/Low


General Care & Growing Tips: 

This plant is low maintenance once established.  Abelia benefits from springtime pruning, but can be pruned as needed any time since flowers are borne on current season’s growth.  Thinning will help stimulate branching and create a fuller plant by allowing more light to reach the interior foliage.  Light applications of a slow-release fertilizer may also be beneficial for increased growth and flowering.  Plant in well-drained soil, enriched with organic matter and maintain a 2- to 3-inch layer of organic mulch.  Glossy Abelia performs best in sunny locations, becoming thin and unattractive in the shade where it may also have trouble flowering.


Common Pests:  No pests or diseases are of major concern, although occasional outbreaks of aphids may occur.


Reference: 

Gilman, E. F. (1999). Abelia x grandiflora. University of Florida. http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fp001



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