When to plant:
Plant during milder months of spring or fall to avoid heat or cold stress.
Where to plant:
Choose a sunny to lightly shaded site with fertile, well-draining soil that will stay evenly moist.
How to plant:
Loosen soil in the planting area and amend with compost. Remove plant from container and gently tease out roots or slice the root ball in several places if potbound. Dig a hole slightly deeper than the root ball and twice as wide. Place the plant in the hole so the top of the root ball is slightly above ground level. Fill in the hole, tamp down soil around the base and water well. Spacing depends on the variety.
CARE AND MAINTENANCE
Pruning and deadheading:
Abelia looks best when allowed to retain its natural shape and size. Since glossy abelia (A. xgrandiflora) blooms on new wood, prune in late winter to early spring before new growth emerges so that flowers are not sacrificed. Remove any dead or damaged branches, and thin as needed to encourage new shoots. Lightly prune to shape. Some varieties produce long, errant watershoots (thin shoots that grow out of the trunk or branches); cut those out whenever they appear. To reinvigorate your abelia, thin out up to a third of the branches every few years. Deciduous varieties that bloom on old wood (such as A. mosanensis) should be pruned lightly as needed just after flowering.
Abelia prefers slightly acidic, organically rich soil that’s kept moderately moist and drains well, but is tolerant of a variety of conditions.
Amendments & fertilizer:
Apply a slow-release fertilizer formulated for woody plants in early spring. Mulch around the root zone with organic matter to retain moisture and suppress weeds.
Though drought and heat tolerant once established, it performs best with regular watering. Irrigate once or twice a week during summer.