The Kaleidoscope Abelia is a semi-evergreen dense shrub with reddish-purple stems and leaves that start out as yellow and green but turn gold during summer. One thing that folks who are just coming to love this plant always want to know is when it blooms.
Kaleidoscope Abelia is a perennial plant that blooms between summer and fall (May to October). Its vibrant colors bloom more when it is grown in full sun. The vibrant foliage colors change from month to month, but the flowers start as pink buds and open into fragrant white flowers at full bloom.
If you would like to learn more about these fragrant blooms, keep reading.
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Kaleidoscope Abelia’s Blooming Season
The Kaleidoscope Abelia is a varicolored variety of Abelia x Grandiflora known as ‘Little Richard.’ As we already mentioned, the blooming season for Kaleidoscope Abelia is between summer and fall.
As fall approaches, it takes on a hot red color and then becomes orange in winter (source). This means that this is when you get the best of its flowers.
This plant grows easily in soil that drains well but retains a level of moisture. It blooms best when grown in full sunlight but also does well with partial shade.
This makes it quite adaptable as a patio plant that can be grown in a pot.
Features of Kaleidoscope Abelia
The following are the botanical characteristics of this plant:
- It changes color per season. The foliage changes color from one season to the next. It is a mix of green and yellow in spring and summer and a blend of hot red and orange in fall. The pink buds open into long, round hollow white flowers during summer.
- The plant takes on different characteristics in different regions. The Kaleidoscope Abelia behaves like an evergreen in warmer climates (regions) and a semi-evergreen or deciduous shrub in colder regions.
- It blooms best when grown in direct sunlight. While the plant will also bloom in partial sunlight, growing under direct sunlight enhances the plant’s color.
- It is a dwarf plant – It doesn’t grow beyond 30 inches (7.62 cm) in height.
- Longest blooming in the family of Abelias. It blooms for as long as six months, the longest that any Abelia shrub blooms.
- It is a hardy plant. It’s pretty resistant to pests, disease, and drought.
Benefits/Advantages of Kaleidoscope Abelia
The following are the pros of this beautiful plant:
- It is excellent for novice gardeners as the plant is easy to maintain. Once it gets to the blooming season, it requires little or no care.
- It can adapt to almost any kind of soil.
- The plant has a long blooming season and remains beautiful all year round.
- It has high aesthetics that increases the curb appeal of a property.
- It is versatile. It can be used as a foundation or hedge plant or added to small groups of plants. It also looks good in containers (flower pots).
How To Plant and Care for Kaleidoscope Abelia
In this segment, we will share tips on planting and maintaining this beautiful shrub.
Before You Plant
Now that you have made up your mind to have this beautiful plant in your garden, here’s what to do before cultivation:
- Have a plan. Map out the area where you want your plant to grow. Take note that the plant will increase in size. Therefore, consider the space it will need to grow without disturbing the growth of other plants. Additionally, inadequate space can hamper the development of the plant itself.
- Get the cutting(s). Abelia Kaleidoscope is a hybridized cultivar so it cannot be grown from seed form. It needs an already established plant. Thus, you need to get cuttings from a nursery or garden center.
- Clear the space. Ensure that the soil is free of weeds then loosen it with a rake. After that, add some organic fertilizers and mulch.
- Check and prepare the soil. This plant requires soil that is well-draining but still retains moisture. The best pH level for Abelia ranges between 5.0 and 7.5. Although it can withstand warm temperatures and drought, it still requires slightly moist soil.
The ideal soils are loamy, chalky, and sandy soil. However, if your soil is not among these, you can use mulch and compost to enhance the nutrient levels.
Go Ahead and Plant
Now that you have gotten your cuttings, cleared the ground, and prepared the soil, it is time to plant:
- Prepare a hole for your plant in the spot you have chosen. Ensure that it is deeper than the plant’s root ball and double the circumference.
- Sprinkle some compost into the hole and transfer the plant into the hole.
- Make sure you shake the plant’s roots slightly loose before placing it in the hole. Mix some more compost into the soil you dug out to make the hole, and then use it to fill back the hole around the root of the plant.
- Water the plant thoroughly.
Maintenance and Care
Your local nursery would be glad to help you out with this, but here are a few tips:
- We assume that you have established where your home falls in the growing zone of the Abelia. Unless you live in one of the hotter regions, your plant will enjoy full sunshine. However, if you live in hotter regions, your plant requires shade in the heat of the day. So all your plant requires is between 6 and 8 hours of direct sunlight daily.
- Ensure that the soil is constantly moist but never waterlogged. You can test the soil by touching the top 3 inches (7.62 cm) of soil. If it is dry, water it, but if not, do not water the plant.
- Kaleidoscope Abelia doesn’t need so much fertilizer all year round. You can apply fertilizer three times a year. The first one ( a slow release) in early spring, a more diluted one that is soluble in water during summer, and a final dose of slow-release fertilizer by the end of summer.
Flowering plants and shrubs add a great deal of value to a property. Not only do they add to the aesthetic appeal of a home, but they also help alleviate stress and lighten the mood of the inhabitants and their visitors.
Gardening is a soothing pastime that is encouraged even by medical personnel. We have shared some essential details of the Kaleidoscope Abelia plant, and you can see that it is pretty easy to plant and maintain. You might want to add it to your garden!