Click for previous Image Image 1 of 3 Ardisia japonica Milky Way Marlberry

Ardisia japonica 'Amanogawa'

Milky Way Marlberry

Plant Type:


Ardisia japonica 'Amanogawa' - This is the striking Milky Way Marlberry. Leathery serrated leaves are light green centered with irregular margins in forest green. Leaves are splotched with fairly large patches of white. Pale pink to white-touched-pink starry flowers open in summer. One-quarter inch red berries adorn this broadleaf evergreen in winter. Birds like the fruits. 'Amanogawa' lights the shady garden as it ground covers. New growth is pinkish adding to interest. Fall foliage picks up bronze infusions on the leathery leaves. Use 'Amanogawa' as a handsome ground cover, edging, forward in the foundation between shrubs, rock garden. Marlberry certainly makes an interesting potted plant in the north in the conservatory, in a cool greenhouse or a barely heated room's windowsill. But it makes a fantastic, suckering ground cover where it can be grown outdoors. Site in part sun to open shade planted in fertile, humus laden acid draining soil. Cutting grown.

Please scroll down to Genus Overview for more information...


8-12 in


15-18 in


Medium Pink, White


7 to 9(10)
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Characteristics and Attributes for Ardisia japonica 'Amanogawa'

Season of Interest (Flowering)

  • Summer

Season of Interest (Foliage)

  • Four Seasons

Autumn Interest

  • Fruit / Berries / Seed Heads

Nature Attraction

  • Songbirds


  • Morning Sun / Afternoon Shade
  • Dappled Shade
  • Shade


  • Ground Cover
  • Border
  • Potted Plant
  • Rock Garden
  • Foliage
  • Woodland
  • Edging
  • Natural Garden
  • Evergreen

Growth Rate in the Garden

  • Moderately Fast


  • Fertile
  • Draining
  • Humus Laden
  • Organic


  • China
  • Japan

Propagated By

  • Division

Genus Overview: Ardisia

Family: Primulaceae · Common Name: Coralberry, Marlberry

Ardisia japonica, known commonly as Coralberry and Marlberry, is a shrubby, ground covering member of Primulaceae. Numerous species exist from the New World, the Pacific Islands, Australia, Asia with a vast number of species occurring in the tropics. We grow a number of fine selections from the species, A. japonica. These grow from 10 to 16(+) inches tall. Leaves are usually whorled or at least in an opposite template. Late spring flowers are pale pink to white, though small they are quite pretty and are held in racemes. The fruit that follows transforms from green to brilliant red and is persistent. "Berries" can approach the size of a dime and sometimes a little large. They are rounded and look like miniature apples. Ardisia, in its 2,500 year history of Chinese folk medicine, considers Ardisia japonica as one of the 50 fundamental herbs. We generally grow it for its phenomenal ornamental character. They are resplendent as they ground cover in shady, dappled or early morning or late day sun. Late morning to latish afternoon filtered light is important. Fertile, moisture retaining ground is a requirement. The many selections provide delight in their ground covering capacity. Not as well appreciated in U.S. gardens these plants are worthy where they can be grown outdoors. But potted plants allow for close up appreciation for their many merits - 4 season interest for sure - farther north if a cool window, porch, greenhouse or conservatory are part of your domain. USDA climate zones 7 to 9(10).