• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Skimmia japonica


  • Family Rutaceae

  • Genus Skimmia are compact evergreen shrubs with simple, aromatic leaves and terminal panicles of small white or yellowish flowers followed, on fertilised female plants, by shiny red berries; most have male and female flowers on separate plants

  • Details S. japonica is a variable, evergreen, densely-branched, dome-shaped shrub, low and creeping or erect, from 0.5m to 7m in height (but typically up to 1.5m in cultivation), with slightly-aromatic, dark green, leathery, obovate to elliptic leaves. White flowers in spring, sometimes flushed pink or red on the outside, appear in panicles at the ends of branches; male flowerheads are large and conspicuous, up to 8cm long, and very sweetly-scented, while the smaller fragrant female flowerheads are followed, if pollinated, by brilliantly bright red fruits, 8mm across, which usually last until the next flowers appear the following spring

  • Plant range China, Japan


  • Foliage Evergreen

  • Habit Bushy

  • Fragrance Flower

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)




  • Partial Shade

  • Full Shade

  • Aspect West-facing or East-facing or North-facing or South-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered


  • Loam


  • Sand


  • Chalk


  • MoistureMoist but well-drained

  • SoilLoam, Sand, Chalk

  • pHAcid, Neutral, Alkaline


  • Ultimate height 1.5-2.5 metres

  • Ultimate spread 1-1.5 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 5-10 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow in humus-rich, light, rich, moist but well-drained soil in partial or full shade; will grow best in neutral or acidic soils, but will also thrive in humus-rich alkaline soils; plant both male and female plants to get fruits

Propagation Propagate by seed, sown in a cold frame in autumn, or sown outside in spring; by softwood cuttings of new growth in early summer and given bottom heat; by semi-ripe cuttings in a cold frame in late summer; or by layering

Suggested planting locations and garden types Flower borders and beds Hedging & Screens Low Maintenance City & Courtyard Gardens Cottage & Informal Garden

How to care

Pruning Pruning group 1 (little or no pruning of trees and shrubs) or pruning group 8 (early-flowering evergreen shrubs)

Pests May be affected by horse chestnut scale and by vine weevil

Diseases May be affected by Phytophthora

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