Sue Sanderson

Sue Sanderson – our horticulturist expert

Sue Says
Abelia is a lovely shrub! ‘Kaleidescope’ is quite a new variety and should have a nice combination of good sized flowers, with a moderate fragrance. For a stronger fragrance look out for Abelia triflora, but the flowers will be smaller. Ideally Abelia prefers to grow in a sheltered, sunny position on fertile, well drained soil, but it is tolerant of quite a range of conditions. Cay soils are quite fertile, but tend to be poorly drained. Drainage can be dramatically improved by the addition of organic matter. Dig in plenty of well rotted garden compost, leaf mould or manure to improve the soil prior to planting. On really heavy clay, it may be beneficial to add some coarse grit to help open up the soil structure. Make sure it is dug in really well to mix it properly with the clay soil. Abelia is best planted in a sheltered south or west facing position. It’s root environment can continue to improve each year by providing a mulch of organic matter in spring, ensuring that it doesn’t mound it up around the stem of the plant. The worms will do the rest of the work!

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