|Spirea japonica 'Little Princess' (part shade tolerant)|
Generally the bumald spirea (Spirea bumalda) and the japonica (Spirea japonica) are more small to medium sized ranging from 2 ' in height such as the shade tolerant 'Little Princess' Spirea and 2-3' in height including the 'Limemound', 'Goldmound' and 'Goldflame' varieties. Spirea 'Anthony Waterer' grows to 3-4', Spirea nipponica 'Snowmound' grows 3-5 ' and Vanhoutte spirea ('Spirea vanhouttei'), Bridal Wreath Spirea grows up to 10' tall and 20' wide.
|Spirea bumalda 'Limemound'|
Most spirea can be pruned after flowering to keep their shape compact. The bumald and Japanese spireas should be pruned in early spring (late March, early April) to promote the best flowering.
|Spirea bumalda 'Anthony Waterer' (part shade tolerant)|
Being low maintenance, drought tolerant and even deer resistant, spirea can make an excellent addition to your garden.
|Spirea bumalda 'Goldflame'|
'Goldmound' and 'Limemound'also display interesting colorful foliage and put on quite a spring and fall show. As mentioned in the name, Spirea 'Goldflame' shows off orange-red new growth in spring and fiery-red foliage in fall. 'Goldmound' and 'Limemound' look great in spring alongside blooms of perennials such as nepeta, salvia and ajuga.
|Spirea japonica 'Goldmound'|
If you have a slightly shadier setting try Spirea 'Little Princess' along with hosta, liriope and heuchera (coral bells). 'Anthony Waterer' is a bit taller so try it along with some hemerocalis (daylily).
Now that you see just how versatile these wonderful shrubs can be give them a try in your landscape. They will give you years of enjoyment!
For more information on even newer varieties visit Feature Shrub: Spirea Double Play.
As Always...Happy Gardening!
Author: Lee@ A Guide to Northeastern Gardening, copyright 2012