The Q&A Archives: Spirea

Question: What is the technical name for June-blooming spirea?

Answer: There is such an amazing array of spirea available to use in the landscape that the choices can be overwhelming. In fact, there are over 80 species and some of those species have dozens of varieties. There are many old-fashioned favorites among the spirea as well as many newly developed favorites. In fact, some varieties have been used in gardens for over 300 years. A member of the rose family, spireas are tough plants. Distinguished by their size, bloom color and season of bloom, spireas all have small leaves and fine, twiggy branches.

Spirea japonica = This grouping of spirea includes compact summer-blooming shrubs of various sizes with blooms of various shades of pink. They are hardy to Zone 4.

Alpine a.k.a. Daphne Grows 12" tall and wide; clusters of light pink to white flowers.
Dakota Goldcharm Grows 12-15" tall; pink flowers; yellowish foliage; recurrent blooms.
Little Princess Grows 2' tall x 3' wide; pink flowers in June and July; compact growth makes them a good groundcover; dark red fall color.
Magic Carpet Grows 18-24" tall x 3' wide; deep pink flowers; golden foliage tipped with red.
Neon Flash Grows 3' tall x 3-5' wide; bright red flowers; purple-tinged flowers: long blooming season.
Shibori Grows 2-3' tall x 3-4' wide; white, pink and rosy-red flowers all at once.

Spirea x bumalda= These spireas have been developed by crossing S. japonica with S. albifloras resulting in compact summer-blooming shrubs. Their flowers vary in color and are held in flat clusters called corymbs. This group of spirea is hardy to Zone 4 and marginally hardy in Zone 3. They are tolerant of a wide range of soil types.

Anthony Waterer Grows 2-3' tall x 3-4' wide; flowers are deep pink; new growth is reddish; noted for its long bloom; reddish-purple fall color.
Crisp Leaf Grows 2-3' tall x 3-4' wide; flowers are pink in large clusters; new growth is burgundy-red.
Dart's Red Grows 2-3' tall x 4-5' wide; deeper red blooms than Anthony Waterer; long bloom season; reddish-purple fall color.
Dwarf Red Grows 2-3' tall x 3-4' wide; rich crimson flowers.
Froebel Grows 2-3' tall x 3-4' wide; bright pink flowers; purplish blush on new growth in spring.
Goldflame Grows 2-3' tall x 3-4' wide; light crimson flowers; long bloom season; bright golden foliage fades to green as it matures; copper orange fall color.
Gumball A more compact version of Froebel.
Limemound A more compact version of Goldflame growing 18-24" tall and wide.

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