Glossy abelia (Abelia x grandiflora) is a cross between A. chinensis and A. uniflora; superior to its parents in both its wealth of flowers and their prominence! The specific epithet means large flowered.
The pale pale pink flowers are carried prodigiously all through high summer and into the late part of the season. As the corollas drop, they leave behind their brownish calyces, which continue the effect of abundance into autumn. Only a hard winter can make it drop its leaves, as privet sometimes does.
- Common name(s): Glossy abelia, Largeflower abelia
- Scientific name: Abelia x grandiflora
- Pronunciation: uh-BEEL-ee-uh gran-dif-FLOR-uh
- Position: Full sun, partial shade (better in full sun)
- Soil: Almost any soil – Grows well in Ballyrobert
- Flowers: June, July, August, September, October
- Other features: Bees, Butterflies, and Bugs
- Hardiness: Fully Hardy – Grows well in Ballyrobert, H5 – Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10°C)
- Habit: Bushy
- Foliage: Evergreen
- Height: 250 to 400 cm ( 8.2 – 13.2 ft)
- Spread: 250 to 400 cm ( 8.2 – 13.2 ft)
- Time to full growth: 10 to 20 years
- Plant type: Herbaceous Perennial, Shrub
- Colour: Pink, white, green
- Goes well with: Wall, Fence
Glossy abelia is a fine-textured, semi-evergreen, sprawling shrub with 1½ inch-long, red-tinged leaves arranged along thin, arching, multiple stems.
It is a hybrid between A. chinensis and A. uniflora. It stands out from other plants because the leaves retain the reddish foliage all summer long, whereas many plants with reddish leaves lose this coloration later in the summer.
Considered to be evergreen in its southern range, glossy abelia will lose 50% of its leaves in colder climates, and the remaining leaves will take on a more pronounced red color. Reaching a height of 6 to 10 feet with a spread of 6 feet, the gently rounded form of glossy abelia is clothed from spring through fall with terminal clusters of delicate pink and white, small, tubular flowers. Multiple stems arise from the ground in a vase shape, spreading apart as they ascend into the foliage.