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Deciduous, Shrubs

Native to Japan. Upright stems with tiers of nearly horizontal branches; plants are narrow in youth, broader in age, but always attractive. Leaves are clustered or crowded near branch ends, turn orange or red in autumn. Clusters of nodding, bell-shaped flowers bloom in spring. Like rhododendrons, they require moist, well-drained acid soil enriched with plenty of organic matter such as peat moss or ground bark. Prune only to remove dead or broken branches. Plant in location where silhouette, flowers, and fall color can be enjoyed close up.

Enkianthus campanulatus (photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.)
Enkianthus campanulatus (photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.)

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Enkianthus campanulatus

Slow-growing shrub to 10–20 ft. tall and half as wide. Bluish green, 1 1/2–3-in.-long leaves turn brilliant red in fall. In late spring, pendulous clusters of yellow-green, red-veined, 1/2-in.-long bells hang below the leaves. There is a white-flowered form.

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