Floridata Plant Encyclopedia

A Floridata Plant Profile 542 Kerria japonica

Common Names: Japanese kerria, Japanese rose Family: Rosaceae (rose Family)


This deciduous shrub forms dense mounds of slender green stems that are attractive even in the winter. Growing to maximum heights of about 6 feet this shrub may sprawl to widths of 8 feet or more. In spring this bushy mass is covered with bright yellow flowers. Most commonly seen is the double flowered form "Pleniflora". The species is a five petaled flower that is smaller (about 1 inch in diameter) than the double form (2 inch diameter). The oval shaped leaves have a serrated edge and begin to appear just in time to provide a fresh green background for the springtime flower display. A variety with variegated leaves is available that will provide color and interest throughout the summer.


Kerria is native to temperate areas of China and Japan. Imported to Europe in the 18th century, it has been a popular garden plant ever since.


Prefers humus rich soils. Fertilize in spring. Prune out a couple of the older shoots every winter to maintain a nice shape. Light: Partial shade is best for longer lasting flowers but Japanese kerria will thrive in direct sun as well. Moisture: Water during times of drought. Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 - 9. Propagation: Easy to propagate, root soft cuttings taken in summer. Also forms natural layers, older plants can be divided into several separate plants.


Japanese rose is a good shrub for foundation plantings and in mixed shrub borders. Blends well into natural areas. In colder zones plant against a wall for winter protection.


This is an easy to care for shrub that provides spring time color and requires little attention. Very easy to propagate.

Jack Scheper 04/02/99

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Kerria species profiled on Floridata:

Kerria japonica

( Japanese kerria, Japanese rose )

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