Pearlbush: The Lotus Moon

Authored by Ryan Falk - Nursery Sales Manager
Feb 1st, 2021
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We like to test a lot of the plants we sell to see how they truly perform in our Manitoba winters. My yard is full of new test run plants, many of which we do not even sell yet. Just beside my back door there is a shrub for which I have an ever growing appreciation. It is the Lotus Moon Pearlbush. It has been there for three years now and has survived both the winter cold and my neglectful watering routine (not recommended for best results).

While the Pearlbush is not necessarily new to our area, and is often dubbed “old fashioned” I do believe the Lotus Moon has something new to offer our landscape.

Pearlbush are native to northern Asia with a hardiness range of zone 4-8. This is often too cold sensitive for our region, however with some testing and searching the Lotus Moon was selected by Bailey’s Nurseries with a zone 3 cold tolerance. It has also been tested locally by Jeffries Nurseries in Carmen.

The name “Pearlbush” comes from the pearl-like appearance of the unopened flower buds in mid-May. The Pearlbush is an early bloomer alongside Double Flowering Plum and Forsythia. The flower buds open into an apple blossom white bloom that will keep for two weeks under good conditions. 

Pearlbush likes to have a well-drained soil with even moisture. They also need at least six hours of sun per day to grow properly. East, south or west side of the house are all good locations for a Pearlbush so long as the plant will have proper sun exposure and shelter from north and west winds. It is a good back row shun for flower beds being tall enough to be seen behind smaller shrubs and perennials, but it is not so large that it is troublesome.

I wonder how the Pearlbush would look in a flowerbed with Emerald Carousel Barberry, and Invincibelle Ruby Hydrangea…and Carmine Jewel Cherry….excuse me, it’s time for my next yard design!

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