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Serissa japonica

Previously known as:

  • Serissa foetida
Phonetic Spelling
ser-ISS-uh juh-PON-ih-kuh
Description

Snowrose is an evergreen or semi-evergreen deciduous shrub in the Coffee family. It is native to sub-tropical woodlands, streambanks and wet meadows in southeast Asia. It grows 2-4 feet tall and slightly wider with stiff branches covered in small glossy leaves and many white flowers.

This plant requires consistent moisture in fertile well-drained soils in partial sun to partial shade. The morning sun is best with protection from the afternoon sun. Use this plant in borders, foundations, containers or along pathways. It is also used extensively in bonsai and is valued for its gnarled trunk, glossy leaves and frequent flowering. It can be difficult to grow as it prefers stable temperatures with little variation. It will grow in colder areas but will not be evergreen if temperatures drop below 40 degrees.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems: Red spider mites, scale, wooly aphis, and mildew are possible problems

 

See this plant in the following landscapes:
Birdbath Nook
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Apple Blossom'
  • 'Kowloon'
  • 'White Swan'
'Apple Blossom', 'Kowloon', 'White Swan'
Tags:
#evergreen#showy flowers#small tree#white flowers#semi-evergreen#bonsai#showy leaves#long bloom time#difficult to grow
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Apple Blossom'
  • 'Kowloon'
  • 'White Swan'
'Apple Blossom', 'Kowloon', 'White Swan'
Tags:
#evergreen#showy flowers#small tree#white flowers#semi-evergreen#bonsai#showy leaves#long bloom time#difficult to grow
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Serissa
    Species:
    japonica
    Family:
    Rubiaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Root Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Asia
    Distribution:
    Southern China, Taiwan
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 3 ft. 0 in. - 5 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Shrub
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Rounded
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Soil pH:
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    3 feet-6 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a, 11b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Funnel
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    6 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    1/3 inch white star-shaped flowers with a tubular base and 4-6 spreading petals. Buds are pink. Blooms are either single or in clusters and appear in the leaf axils or branch ends. Blooms profusely spring to fall.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Leathery
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Ovate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    1/4-1/2 inch dense leathery, opposite, simple deep green leaves with yellow margins
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Light Gray
    Bark Description:
    Rough light gray trunk
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Wiry green stems
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Walkways
    Landscape Theme:
    Asian Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Border
    Foundation Planting