Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Japanese Photinia, Red Tip Photinia, Red Leaf Photinia
Photinia glabra

Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Photinia (foh-TIN-nee-uh) (Info)
Species: glabra (GLAY-bruh) (Info)

One member has or wants this plant for trade.

View this plant in a garden


10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)
12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

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By Andrew60
Thumbnail #1 of Photinia glabra by Andrew60

By CaptMicha
Thumbnail #2 of Photinia glabra by CaptMicha

By artcons
Thumbnail #3 of Photinia glabra by artcons

By Kauai17
Thumbnail #4 of Photinia glabra by Kauai17

By Kauai17
Thumbnail #5 of Photinia glabra by Kauai17

By Kauai17
Thumbnail #6 of Photinia glabra by Kauai17

By CoreHHI
Thumbnail #7 of Photinia glabra by CoreHHI

There are a total of 12 photos.
Click here to view them all!


3 positives
1 neutral
3 negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Negative tx_flower_child On Apr 7, 2013, tx_flower_child from Dallas, TX wrote:

VERY invasive. Although I didn't plant it (guess a bird did), it has completely taken over the part of my yard where I had been growing Ardisia as a ground cover. Also, have seen large photinia shrubs/hedges/trees in my area that die to either a fungus or something of that nature (sorry not to be specific).

Positive Alileo On Oct 18, 2010, Alileo from Manila
Philippines wrote:

I have 18 Photinias planted around a swimming pool; they are around 5 years old now and 8ft to 10 ft tall, pruned into cone shapes. All bloomed profusely for the first time this summer. When the blooms were all spent, hundreds of small (5mm approx.) orange-green berries appeared, ripening to black; I collected most of the seeds, picking them from the trees or gathering those that fell on the ground. NONE of the seeds I collected germinated. Later, however, I found seedlings that had sprouted from the seeds I'd left lying on the ground in the shadow under each tree. These I gathered and transplanted into little plant bags. The swimming pool maintenance guy complained of the copious amounts of filaments from the flowers. That's the only negative point I have about this plant, but I love it and so maintaining the pool filter for the 2 weeks duration of Photinia flowers a year is worth the inconvenience.

Neutral lehua_mc On May 23, 2009, lehua_mc from Portland, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

This plant is frequently used in Portland as a very thick, massive hedge and along freeways, if that tells you anything. I have one and appreciate its stoic nature as an evergreen privacy buffer. The new red growth in spring is striking, but the red is more of rusty tone and not to my liking. It tends to clash with a lot of other plants flowering at the same time. So far none of the plants in Portland seem to be suffering any blights.

Negative demosthenes07 On Apr 17, 2009, demosthenes07 from Albuquerque, NM wrote:

This plant is overused in albuquerque and easily grows to 15ft. They are very high maintenance with all of the leaf drop and pruning. They need to be pruned twice a year or the lose their shape and don't get as many red tips because the interior of the plant will turn to wood with no leaves. The scent is awful. The first day it's kinda nice and perfumey, but then smells like hot rotting trash or cat pee. I can't even go outside at night when they are full bloom. Hummingbirds, moths, and bees love this plant in bloom though.

It can take severe pruning and will grow back as long as sun hits the bare branch. Homeowners don't take care of them here though and they encroach property lines and look ugly when they get leggy. Letting them get over 12ft makes the tops die back.

Positive mtnbarbie On Jan 19, 2009, mtnbarbie from Friendswood, TX wrote:

I have this in the landscaping of my east facing yard. It receives about 2 hours of sun in the morning and about 1 hour in the afternoon and still thrives. It has grown quickly - from approx 24" to over 5 feet in two years. It looks lovely year round. The blooms last for over a month - around March - and smell wonderful. New foliage is bright red turning darker as the leaves mature to a nice deep green color. It stays green throughout my zone 9 winter. It survived a three day freeze and has survived 2 hurricanes, being uprooted during the second. We just put it back in the ground with a bit of fertilizer and it was fine.

In the past we have pruned the tips after blooming to encourage more of those brightly colored new leaves. This year we plan on pruning from the bottom up to give it more of a tree like appearance. If it works well I will post some photos.

We haven't had any trouble with fungus or insects although we have had those troubles with the Japanese Privit next to it. What else can I say - it has been a real joy to watch this plant grow.

Negative dp72 On Jul 9, 2008, dp72 from Woodway, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Entomosporium leaf spot is killing these by the hundreds of thousands in Texas and other states! This plant should never be offered for sale~

Positive CoreHHI On Apr 3, 2008, CoreHHI from Bluffton, SC (Zone 9a) wrote:

Makes a nice hedge or a stand alone. Flowers are strong smelling when they bloom in April, in my area. They grow like crazy and can grow into a 25-30 ft tree but they look better when pruned. Good for screening or a hedge.

Some people have had trouble with them dying off from fungus but I just don't see that happen in my area. Might want to check if it's a problem where you live.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Menifee, California
San Jacinto, California
Vincent, California
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Albany, Georgia
Clarksville, Maryland
Linthicum Heights, Maryland
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Corrales, New Mexico
Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Portland, Oregon
Bluffton, South Carolina
Memphis, Tennessee
Caddo Mills, Texas
Dallas, Texas
Friendswood, Texas
Kyle, Texas
Red Oak, Texas
Round Rock, Texas
Whitesboro, Texas
Dupont, Washington
Midland, Washington

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