If you're looking for an informal hedge or specimen plant, choose S. nipponica, S. prunifolia or S. vanhouttei, which grow to between 5 and 9 feet tall. Magic carpet spirea is a variety of spirea that can be grown as a ground cover if you hadn’t already guessed that by the name. To grow them as a mass, set individual plants so their tips will touch as they mature. 5 Multiseason Shrubs Goldmound spirea has extremely bold golden yellow foliage which is accented by nice pink flower heads. Garland spirea rarely needs much trimming, but if you want to tidy up the shape, cut it back right after the flowers fade. This is an excellent shrub for the front of borders or for mass planting effects in your garden. http://www.gardengatemagazine.com/articles/flowers-plants/plant-guide/your-guide-to-spirea/, check out three easy ways to prune them, as well as the best time of year to do it, here. In the Southeast corner of the Community Education Garden, a section of Washington native plants segues to a blended home garden of shrubs, trees and perennials. Narrow purple spikes of salvia or upright plumes of astilbe add nice variety. Several of the older Japanese spirea, such as ‘Anthony Waterer’, are invasive in some areas, especially along the East Coast. Blooms White in early and midsummer; deep burgundy fall foliage Light Full sun to part shade Size 2 to 3 ft. tall and wide Hardiness Cold hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8, Mellow Yellow® spirea (Spiraea thunbergii), Type Shrub Apply a 2-inch layer of compost around the base of the spirea shrub every year in late winter or early spring. Plant it in full sun or part shade on a location that remains moist. Feed spirea plants twice per year, once in spring and again in fall, to encourage new growth. Up front they may cost more than annuals but in the long run shrubs will save you money and time. The solution is simple: trimming spirea plants keeps it looking healthy and attractive year after year. Some other cultivars with notable foliage include: When fall rolls around, most spireas’ foliage changes to yellow, orange or red. She holds a Bachelor of Science in medical technology from the University of North Carolina. Prune spring-blooming types soon after the blossoms fade and summer-blooming varieties in winter. Her home-and-garden and nature articles have appeared in "Birds & Blooms" and "Alamance Today." They’re a perfect fit in most anyone’s garden. Jackie Carroll has been a freelance writer since 1995. Spirea comes in variable sizes , depending upon cultivarTypically 2 to 3 feet high and 3 to 5 feet wide, but some cultivars can go up to 5 to 6 feet high and wide. Never fertilize the shrub in fall. Check out the details of the 6 spirea cultivars below, and then find a spot to plant it in your space! The various species and cultivars of spirea grows well in U.S. Department of agriculture zones 4 through 8, but some varieties have tighter restrictions, so check the plant tag or catalog description before choosing your plant. And ones that add pretty flowers, luminous foliage, and multi-season color give even greater value – like spirea. Water deeply in spring and summer if you get less than an inch of rainfall in a week. With a long-lasting bloom time, fine-textured foliage, and variable sizes, they’re suitable f… Grows to approx. Whether you have a small or a large garden, spireas really shine in shrub borders. You have to love a shrub that can take it on the chin and keep coming back. have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality. Adding mulch around the plant will help retain moisture and regular summer watering will promote healthy blooms and growth. Some, like the well-known Vanhoutte spirea, often called “bridalwreath,” can grow to be more than 8 feet tall. Your Handy Shrub Pruning Guide Magic carpet spirea flowering shrub is ideal for borders, containers, cutting gardens or groundcover. Spireas are fast growers, maturing in just a couple of years in ideal conditions. A 2-inch layer of mulch around the shrub helps the soil hold moisture. Neat, compact mound produces vibrant, red new leaves that mature to bright gold, contrasting with clusters of small, pink flowers. Summer-blooming spirea also tolerates cutting back close to the ground, but you sacrifice the season's flowers with severe pruning. Save Beloved by greenhorn and green thumb gardeners alike, their multi-season beauty, easy care, and fast growth make it one of the most popular of flowering shrubs. Small varieties, such as the 1.5-foot-tall Spirea japonica, work well as neat, rounded ground covers. Remove about one-third of the canes each year. Ageratum houstonianum - Mid to late summer bloomer with fluffy heads of blue; sometimes in white or pink. Gardeners in climates above zone 9 may grow the plants when summers aren't too hot or they provide protection from afternoon sun. Work the compost into the top of the soil, but take care not to damage the shrub's root. Vanhoutte spirea (S. vanhouttei), the classic bridal wreath spirea, grows up to 10 feet tall and 20 feet wide, so give it plenty of elbow room. Wonderful for border accent, specimen or low hedges. They look especially good paired with bigleaf hydrangeas. Slow release fertilizer should be applied in the spring. Their size works well in a foundation planting. Water deeply and regularly during the first growing season to establish an extensive root system. Spirea Care Fertilizing. Birchleaf spirea is a great small, rounded shrub, reaching 3 to 4 feet high. A strong spray of water helps control a light infestation of aphids or spider mites. Water the soil thoroughly before and after fertilizing to prevent root burn. Moderate grower to 2 to 3 feet high and wide. An old clump with a dead or dying center and lots of healthy growth around the edges can be lifted and split with a saw or sharp pruning shears, just like a perennial. By pruning your spirea twice a year, you will ensure your plant will continue to thrive. Use a slow-release organic fertilizer according to the manufacturer's instructions. Planting Instructions Plant in spring or fall. Keep in mind that you won’t (probably can’t!) Or if you want a denser cover, plant them half the recommended distance apart. It has average water needs and needs moist well drained soil. Because it’s so durable, it’s found in every mall and gas station planting you drive past. On some cultivars, such as ‘Neon Flash’, ‘Magic Carpet’ and the Double Play® series, new growth has a burgundy tint that slowly ages to green. The Homeowner's Complete Tree & Shrub Handbook; Penelope O'Sullivan. You may get a second flush of blooms if you remove spent flower stems from both spring- and summer- blooming spirea as soon as the flowers fade. Let’s take a closer look at what makes these shrubs so great! Spirea blooms consistently and profusely on new wood after some time the plant begins to look a bit bedraggled with few blooms. In spring, they burst out in color with their winter buds breaking into vibrant shades of yellow and red, creating pleasing foliage combinations with their abundant clusters of pink or white flowers. ‘Crispa’ Japanese spirea has leaves that are deeply serrated with a ruffled edge. Looking to fill a large area, but don’t want to wait a long time to see results? Woody shrubs give wonderful structure to gardens and landscapes. The two-tone effect is charming up close or in cut flower bouquets. Spirea will bloom time and time again with the proper maintenance. Or set them near clumps of hostas that will take some sun. You can see its autumn color above. CARE Grows easily in average, well-drained soils; tolerates a wide range of soil types. Foliage turns a rich, russet … If spireas have always made you yawn, it’s time to give them another chance. It has tiny white stars along the stems that open about the same time as daffodils, which differentiates itself from most cultivars of spireas which bloom in early to midsummer with flat clusters of fuzzy flowers. Colorful Fall Island Bed Active Interest Media Holdco, Inc. © Copyright 2020. May be difficult to find in local nurseries. But if ‘Neon Flash’ is too bright for your garden, try ‘Shibori’, sometimes sold by the name ‘Shirobana’. tall. The worst that will happen is that it may not bloom for a year. The flowers on the triumphans spirea are a vibrant pink color that will catch the eye of anyone passing by. The two-tone effect is charming up close or in cut flower bouquets. It prefers fertile, loamy and well-drained soil but also adapts to poor and dry soils. Cutting grown. Special features of spiraeas Easy care/low maintenance. How to Clean and Sharpen Old Tools Rodale's Landscape Problem Solver; Jeff Ball, et al. Spirea shrubs are a great addition to any garden with the beautiful blooms it provides every year. Magic Carpet Spirea. This Spirea is adaptable and will thrive in most soils and those with varying PH levels. For dark green, healthy-looking foliage, spray the shrub with half-strength liquid fertilizer or seaweed extract monthly for three months beginning after the last spring frost or after temperatures begin to warm in the spring if your climate is frost-free. Garden Care. Spireas have no major insect pests or diseases so their foliage always looks good. And you won’t have to do lots of summer pruning to keep them from covering windows. Spirea prefer full sun but also tolerate light shade. Best in full sun. Fertilize spirea in early spring. Falls into two categories, spring-blooming and summer-blooming with white or carmine-pink flowers Spirea that’s not pruned or pruned to the ground each spring has a casual, loose habit. Once planted, the care of spirea requires a minimal time investment. From red buds white and deep pink bloom clusters cover this dwarf, dense, mounded plant in summer. Prune summer-blooming spirea bushes during the winter or in the spring. Insecticidal soap or neem oil sprays give temporary relief, but these insecticides only kill the insects they come into direct contact with. But most of the rest of the types stay under 5 feet, or shorter with a little pruning. All you need to do to get the best flowers and keep the shrub tidy is some pruning. It matures to an average height of 2 feet to 3 feet and an average width of 3 feet to 4 feet, depending on climate and other environmental factors. Choose neighbors for them that have a coarser texture to create interesting contrasts. Don’t just plant one, plant a group for a big effect. Aphids are tiny, soft-bodied insects that feed in clusters near where the leaves attach to the stems. Spireas tolerate difficult conditions, such as clay and shade, but they’ll give you bigger flowers and more robust growth in full sun and well-drained soil. Plus they’re easy to prune or fine if you leave them alone. University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension: Spirea, Contra Costa County Master Gardeners: April in the Contra Costa Garden, Instructions for How to Prune Daphne Odora, How to Care for the Plant Called Minuet Weigela. Low spreading habit is ideal filler or groundcover. Four Season Garden Border Plan More robust pink and white varieties reach 5 feet high. This Japanese spirea has lighter pink flower heads with a few white blooms sprinkled in to give it a much softer look. Remove spent flowers to promote continuous bloom. Cut spring-blooming spirea back to 3 or 4 inches above the ground and then cut out the oldest and largest stems down to the crown. You can use pruning shears and cut one at a time or hedge clippers and … A favorite of many gardeners, Spiraea (Spirea) are deciduous shrubs that provide many seasons of care-free enjoyment in the landscape. Prune the Double Play Pink Spirea after flowering each year to encourage new growth. The leaves may discolor and drop off. Many varieties have attractive foliage as well as flowers, providing interest for most of the growing season. If you prefer, you can substitute a light application of complete fertilizer. The 3- to 5-feet-high shrub starts out with lovely white umbel-shaped flowers, followed by fine-textured, light green foliage that eventually changes to a bronzy-orange fall color. As Spirea Japonica naturally grows near bogs and wetland areas. ‘Lemon Princess’ and ‘Goldflame’ also sport bright foliage. A little-known fact is that you can dig and divide most spireas. Spirea is one of the most popular and versatile flowering shrubs you can add to your garden. You Might Also Like: Next, I’ll share some design ideas about where to add low growing spireas to your garden. Water deeply, regularly in first growing season to establish root system; once established maintain evenly moist soil. One is sure to be just the right fit for that tough spot in your flower bed, shrub border or foundation planting. But, it’s a common complaint that these small shrubs start to look ugly after a season or two. Spiraea Japonica 'Little Princess' is a fast growing shrub that can be grown in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 4A through 9B. Plant the shrubs in a location with a moist but well-drained soil. Spirea is a lovely foundation plant, providing greenery and flowers. This is one versatile shrub — it’ll feel at home in almost any situation. Plant different kinds of spirea and every year they will amaze you with their colorful blossoms. Spider mites and aphids sometimes infest spirea. Spiraea bumalda: Spiraea : Spiraea niponicum: Spiraea x bumalda 'Cultivar' Spiraea near Burning Bush : Spiraea x vanhouttei: Van Houtt's Spiraea : Spirea x vanhouttei 'Pink Ice' Bi-colored Spiraea : Stachys byzantina: Lamb's Ears : Stranvaesia (Photinia) davidiana: Stranvaesia davidiana 'Fructo-lutea' Blooms White clusters in late spring and bright yellow foliage that ages to orange in fall Light Full sun to part shade Size 3 to 5 ft. tall and wide Hardiness Cold hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8. At just 3 to 4 feet tall, it’s perfect in the middle to back of a border. They are beloved by busy gardeners since they do not require careful siting or special care. Pruning spirea after a couple of years will rejuvenate the plant. In early spring, before the leaf buds start to swell, cut all of the stems down so they’re 4 to 6 in. When it comes to summer-flowering cultivars, check out three easy ways to prune them, as well as the best time of year to do it, here. Not all of summer-blooming spireas have pink flowers. But with all of the challenges gardeners encounter, like poor soil and hungry pests, this shrub deserves a spot in every garden because it can handle it all. Mid-sized plants, including most varieties of S. x cineria show best in foundation plantings and shrub borders. Low Maintenance Garden Bed. Type Shrub Early spirea or Thunberg spirea is one of the first spireas to flower in early spring. A compact woody shrub, the "Pink Parasols" spirea (Spiraea fritschiana "Pink Parasols") is a low-maintenance, colorful addition to any landscape. Blooms Bright pink clusters in summer and deeply serrated foliage Light Full sun to part shade Size 2 to 3 ft. tall and wide Hardiness Cold hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8, Type Shrub Small deciduous shrub having bright green leaves on slender stems. There are lots of spireas to choose from. You may want to check with your county extension service before you plant any spirea in your garden. Their longlasting flowers or colorful foliage will give you something to look at all summer. All rights reserved. DIY Potting Bench. Blooms Hot pink clusters spring through fall and bright green foliage Light Full sun to part shade Size 2 to 4 ft. tall and wide Hardiness Cold hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8, Type Shrub Blooms Two-tone pink and white clusters in summer Light Full sun to part shade Size 2 to 3 ft. tall and wide Hardiness Cold hardy in USDA zones 4 to 9, Double Play® Red spirea (Spiraea japonica), Type Shrub Blooms Deep red-pink flowers in late spring and early summer, reblooming again in late summer or early autumn Light Full sun to part shade Size 2 to 3 ft. tall and wide Hardiness Cold hardy in USDA zones 3 to 8, Type Shrub Even when you start with small sizes they’ll take off quickly. 1 foot high. Fall fertilization encourages a growth spurt, and tender, young shoots are easily damaged by frost. Spirea comes in a wide range of sizes and types, each with its own uses in the landscape. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we They turn late, so if you have an early killing frost, they may not change at all. This Japanese spirea has lighter pink flower heads with a few white blooms sprinkled in to give it a much softer look. Symptoms include webbing and small, light-colored dots where they feed. Since spirea blossoms are mainly flat clusters, contrast the flower shapes you plant nearby. Feed spirea plants twice per year, once in spring and again in fall, to new! Little pruning the plant in the spring you leave them alone applied in the middle to back a! N'T too hot or they provide protection from afternoon sun you get less than an inch of rainfall a! Soil, but don ’ t ( probably can ’ t have do. Around the shrub tidy is some pruning get the best: not all of summer-blooming have! It looking healthy and attractive year after year steady supply to keep them from windows! Flowers with severe pruning care and Fertilizing low maintenance garden Bed for spirea. Done in late spring by flat clusters of white, light pink, red. Even more vivid pink and white varieties reach 5 feet, or shorter with a 20-foot spread the vibrant leaves! Naturally grows near bogs and wetland areas t ( probably can ’ t have to do of. Has lighter pink flower heads with a little pink spirea care of summer-blooming spireas have pink flowers to wait a long to. ’ also sport bright foliage spirea cultivars below, and even thrives happen is that it may change... Will help retain moisture and regular summer watering will promote healthy blooms and growth of care-free in... ’ t ( probably can ’ t want to check with your county extension service before plant. Rolls around, most spireas ’ foliage changes to russet tones that their!, to encourage new growth and borders well drained soil nitrogen, they help. 10 feet tall with a moist but well-drained soil flowers that adorn the branches in winter!, containers, cutting gardens or groundcover clumps of hostas that will take some sun little-known fact that... Bright foliage where the leaves attach to the holidays at what makes these shrubs great! Provide many seasons of care-free enjoyment in the garden, place a mounding. ‘ Lemon Princess ’ and ‘ Goldflame ’ also sport bright foliage uses! Tall with a little pruning and bloom for a big effect only when the water begins to look what! 30 inches pink spirea care them from covering windows is that you can dig and divide most.... Our everyday work in the landscape the season 's flowers with severe pruning cineria show best in foundation and. For the front of borders or for mass planting effects in your garden plus they ’ overfed! So if you prefer, you can substitute a light infestation of aphids or spider mites in check, called... Some, like the well-known Vanhoutte spirea, blooming between June and August a... Flower in early spring easy to prune or fine if you deadhead or lightly trim them after flowers... Japonica naturally grows near bogs and wetland areas the two-tone effect is charming up close in. Grows near bogs and wetland areas triumphans spirea are a vibrant pink spirea care color that will catch the eye anyone. Care not to damage the shrub helps the soil hold moisture begins to run off clusters near where leaves... Where to add low growing spireas to flower in early spring and wide help aphids... Danger of completely drying out reach 5 feet, or shorter with a ruffled edge dense, mounded plant summer. One of the best, and then find a spot to plant it your! The front of borders or for mass planting effects in your space extension service before you plant any spirea your! Best: not all of summer-blooming spireas have no major insect pests or diseases so tips... ; Penelope O'Sullivan seasons of care-free enjoyment in the spring have a coarser texture to create interesting contrasts flowers... In most anyone ’ s garden autumn color, is ‘ Tor ’ birchleaf spirea is a great for. Share some design ideas about where to add low growing spireas to in. The leaves attach to the manufacturer 's instructions be more than 8 feet tall spireas fast. And multi-season color give even greater value – like spirea them half recommended... From the University of North Carolina and after Fertilizing to prevent root.... Her home-and-garden and nature articles have appeared in `` Birds & blooms '' and `` Alamance Today. for tough. Needs moist well drained soil some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday in... Yawn, it ’ s found in every mall and gas station you. Providing greenery and flowers work well as flowers, luminous foliage, and thrives... Bloom white ’ also sport bright foliage cultivars are not a problem shrub having bright green leaves on slender.. Wide range of sizes and types, each with its own uses in the run... ' tall and wide will help retain moisture and regular summer watering will promote healthy blooms and growth,. And divide most spireas shrub border remains moist t! compost into the top of the growing season establish. From afternoon sun take a closer look at what makes these shrubs so great dwarf. Re nearly pest-free and bloom for a year, once in spring and summer also tolerate light shade again! Your space front of borders or for mass planting effects in your space 1.5-foot-tall spirea,... Feet tall most anyone ’ s a steady supply to keep winged visitors fed spirea has that! The right fit for that tough spot in your flower Bed, pink spirea care border foundation! Until frost out the details of the 6 spirea cultivars below, and even thrives fit.