Enjoy the Cleyera Japonica’s Shiny Green Leaves All Year Long
The Cleyera Japonica shrub, or Japanese Cleyera, is a large plant or small tree that will keep its green leaves all year long when grown in the proper climate. The leaves look glossy but feel leathery, and some of them are a coppery brown that complements the green leaves well.
The foliage is the main show on this plant, so you may not notice the grey bark or the tiny white flowers, but they do add to the overall elegance of the plant. The Cleyera Japonica flowers appear in the spring and develop small black berries in late summer or fall. With the evergreen foliage, spring flowers, and fall berries, this shrub will stay a focal point in your garden all year long.
The Cleyera Japonica is a massive shrub, so it can certainly be planted alone in your yard as a focal point. It also makes a great foundation plant or privacy screen if you have a lot you want to hide. You can plant several in a row to create a tall hedge that will give you all the privacy you need.
Cleyera Japonica Care
Japonica Cleyera shrub grows well in hardiness zones 6-9. It’s tolerant of sun and shade, so you can plant this almost anywhere and achieve moderate success. Be sure to protect it from wind since strong winds can damage it.
Cleyera Japanese grows best in full sun or partial shade. However, the hotter the climate, the more shade it will need, so provide it with afternoon shade if your climate has extended periods of extreme heat in the summer. Full shade isn’t ideal, but it may be able to tolerate it if its other needs are met.
Cleyera bushes prefers moist soil while it’s young or newly transplanted into your garden. Once it’s established, it’s drought-tolerant and won’t require as much water. Avoid letting water puddle around the roots since too much water will lead to root rot and other problems.
Cleyera plants aren't picky about soil as long as it’s well-draining to prevent standing water.
Make sure the soil is rich in nutrients. It will look its best if the soil is high in organic matter, so applying compost once or twice yearly will help it tremendously. If that isn’t feasible, you can apply a slow-release fertilizer to provide the nutrients it needs.
Cleyera Japonica Size
The plant can grow 10-15 feet tall and 8-10 feet wide, making it a huge shrub! You can prune the bottom leaves off to give it the appearance of a small tree if you prefer that look. It grows rapidly, up to 3 feet per year if the conditions are ideal.
Pruning isn’t required, but it may be something you want to do frequently since it grows vigorously. Cleyera Japonica hedges and foundation plants may need to be pruned more often since they typically need to be kept in a specific shape. However, you can prune it when you want to give it your desired shape.
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Full Sun / Partial Shade
Growing Zones 6, 7, 8, 9