Japanese Clethra (Clethra Barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW)

Plant: Table of Contents

Japanese Clethra (Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW)

What is a Plant?

Plants are living organisms belonging to the kingdom Plantae. They are multicellular, eukaryotic organisms that carry out photosynthesis, a process that allows them to manufacture their own food using sunlight, carbon dioxide, and water. Plants play a crucial role in the environment by producing oxygen and providing habitats for various organisms. Additionally, they are a vital source of food, medicine, and raw materials for countless products.

Japanese Clethra (Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW)

Japanese clethra (Clethra barbinervis), also known as ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW, is an exquisite flowering shrub that belongs to the Clethraceae family. This ornamental plant is known for its captivating floral display and attractive foliage, making it a popular choice for gardens and landscaping projects. It is native to Japan and is favored for its elegant appearance and versatility in different garden settings.

Japanese clethra is renowned for its ornamental qualities, including its striking foliage, fragrant flowers, and overall resilience. The cultivar ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW is particularly prized for its unique combination of vibrant features, making it a sought-after addition to gardens and landscapes. In the following sections, we will explore the key aspects of Japanese clethra, including its culture, uses, care requirements, and more.

Key Takeaways – Japanese Clethra (Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW)

  • Plant Name: Japanese Clethra (Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW)
  • Family: Clethraceae
  • Common Names: First Snow Clethra, Japanese Clethra Shrub
  • Cultivar: Takeda Nishiki



Japanese clethra is valued for its ornamental and aesthetic appeal. It is commonly used in garden landscapes, woodland gardens, and mixed borders to add a touch of elegance and charm. The fragrant flowers and vibrant foliage make it an excellent choice for creating visually appealing garden displays and attracting pollinators.


While Japanese clethra is relatively tolerant of various soil conditions, it thrives in consistently moist, well-drained soil. It is essential to provide adequate water, especially during dry spells, to ensure the plant’s health and vitality. Regular watering is particularly crucial during its establishment phase and during hot, dry periods.


Japanese clethra prefers partial shade to full sun, making it a versatile choice for various garden environments. It thrives in dappled sunlight or partially shaded areas, where it can benefit from a balance of light and shade throughout the day. However, it can also tolerate full sun, particularly in cooler climates.


Applying a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring can promote healthy growth and abundant flowering. Opt for a formula specifically designed for flowering shrubs to provide the necessary nutrients for robust foliage and prolific blooms. Additionally, incorporating organic matter into the soil during planting can enrich the soil and support the plant’s overall vitality.


Japanese clethra thrives in moist, well-drained soil with a slightly acidic to neutral pH. It performs well in loamy, sandy, or clay soils, as long as they offer good drainage. Additionally, incorporating organic matter such as compost or leaf mold can enhance the soil structure and fertility, providing an optimal growing environment for the plant.


Pruning Japanese clethra is generally minimal, as it has a naturally attractive growth habit. However, periodic maintenance pruning can help shape the plant and remove any dead or damaged branches. The best time to prune Japanese clethra is after flowering, as this allows for the removal of spent blooms and the shaping of the plant without interfering with the next season’s flower buds.


Japanese clethra can be propagated through various methods, including seed propagation, softwood cuttings, and division. Softwood cuttings, taken in late spring or early summer, can root relatively quickly under favorable conditions. Additionally, division can be carried out during the plant’s dormant period, with the resulting divisions being replanted in suitable locations.

Container Popularity

Japanese clethra is well-suited for container cultivation, allowing it to be incorporated into garden designs and landscapes that require portable or confined plantings. When grown in containers, it is essential to provide adequate drainage and maintain consistent moisture levels to support the plant’s health and vitality. Selecting a high-quality potting mix and providing regular feeding can also contribute to its successful growth in containers.

Common Diseases

Japanese clethra is relatively resistant to most common garden diseases. However, it may be susceptible to issues such as powdery mildew, leaf spot, and root rot if environmental conditions are unfavorable or if the plant is stressed. Proper care, including adequate spacing, air circulation, and appropriate watering, can help reduce the risk of disease and promote overall plant health.

Disease Diagnosis

Diagnosing diseases in Japanese clethra typically involves inspecting the plant for symptoms such as discolored or distorted foliage, powdery coatings on leaves, or unusual spots and lesions. Proper identification of the issue is essential for implementing targeted control measures, which may include adjusting cultural practices, applying fungicidal treatments, or improving growing conditions to support the plant’s recovery.

Common Pests

While Japanese clethra is relatively resistant to many pests, it may occasionally encounter issues with aphids, scale insects, and spider mites. Regular monitoring of the plant for signs of pest infestations can help detect issues early and facilitate prompt intervention. Additionally, maintaining a healthy growing environment and promoting natural predators can contribute to pest control.

Botanist’s Tips

  • When planting Japanese clethra, consider its mature size and provide ample space for the plant to reach its full potential without overcrowding.
  • Regularly monitor moisture levels in the soil, particularly during hot, dry periods, to ensure consistent moisture without waterlogging the roots.
  • Incorporate organic matter into the soil when planting to improve its structure and fertility, providing an optimal growing environment for the plant.
  • Prune Japanese clethra after flowering to shape the plant and remove any spent blooms, promoting a tidy and attractive appearance.

Fun Facts

  • The fragrant flowers of Japanese clethra attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, enhancing the ecological value of the plant in garden settings.
  • The cultivar ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW is known for its distinctive variegated foliage, adding visual interest to the plant’s overall appearance.
  • Japanese clethra is a versatile and low-maintenance plant, making it an excellent choice for both novice and experienced gardeners seeking a reliable and attractive addition to their landscapes.

Links to External Resources

In summary, Japanese clethra (Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW) is a captivating and resilient plant with ornamental qualities that make it a valued addition to garden landscapes and mixed borders. Its vibrant foliage, fragrant flowers, and adaptable nature make it a versatile choice for various garden settings, from shaded woodlands to sunny borders. By understanding its culture, uses, care requirements, and unique features, gardeners and plant enthusiasts can fully appreciate the charm and appeal of this exceptional plant.

With its elegant appearance, natural resilience, and ecological benefits, Japanese clethra stands as a testament to the beauty and value of ornamental plants in enhancing the natural world and providing enjoyment for individuals and communities alike.

Now that we have covered all the aspects of Japanese Clethra (Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW) according to the given NLP LSI keywords and provided comprehensive insights about its culture, uses, care requirements, and more, readers can gain a thorough understanding of this remarkable plant. This information will enable them to make informed decisions regarding the cultivation and appreciation of Japanese clethra, further enhancing their gardening experiences and appreciation for ornamental plants.


  1. Clethra barbinervis. Missouri Botanical Garden. Link
  2. Clethra barbinervis – Plant Finder. Missouri Botanical Garden. Link
  3. Clethra barbinervis ‘Takeda Nishiki’ FIRST SNOW. The Royal Horticultural Society. Link

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Peter Taylors

Expert botanist who loves plants. His expertise spans taxonomy, plant ecology, and ethnobotany. An advocate for plant conservation, he mentors and educates future botanists, leaving a lasting impact on the field.