Enkianthus grows best in full sun but will tolerate light shade. It prefers a moist, well-drained, acidic soil, rich in organic matter. It is resistant to insects, disease and deer.
Bell-shaped flowers (yellow to light orange with red veins) hang in pendulous clusters and bloom in May. The flowers appear as the leaves emerge, so the blooms are easy to see. Several cultivars are available with red, pink or white flowers.
The shrub retains its seed pods and is a good source of food for northern juncos in winter. Fall color is spectacular, with the leaves turning brilliant reds and oranges. It is definitely our favorite shrub for fall color.
Plant enkianthus where it can be enjoyed and admired throughout all seasons. Plant it near a patio and you will see birds surrounding it through winter and early spring. Hanging hummingbird feeders near it in summer will add to the continuous pleasure this shrub gives.