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Weigela Shrub - Where and How to Grow


Once you get the pronunciation of the word right, growing Weigela is a relatively straightforward matter, for it is a shrub that requires little care and attention. The little bit of care that a Weigela plant needs will be rewarded handsomely with a display of flowers for much of the summer.

Weigela is one of the old favorites of garden shrubs and has remained popular to this day. Many writers shun it, simply because most that can be written about Weigela has already been written. But no serious gardening section about shrubs or flowering plants can ignore it. Weigela is here to stay and has already seen off a host of new arrivals.

I like Weigela Shrubs!

Late Spring and early Summer are the main flowering times, but Weigelas will rarely be without a few flowers right through the summer.

Weigela red flowersWeigelas are of East Asian origin, with their favourite habitat being at the edge of woodlands and scrub areas – rarely being found within the shade of woodland itself.  They form mounded or upright growing deciduous shrubs, varying in height according to variety, but most are happy to grow to 8ft 2.4m over ten years with a similar spread.

Where to Grow Weigela

A full sun position is ideal to bring out the best of flower power, but a little shade – dappled – will do no harm as long as the stems get back by the sun at some part of the day.

Weigela shrub is best suited to growing in the open ground rather than in a container – though they can be grown in a large patio pot for a few years before planting in the garden.  It seems to grow well in any soil type – I have grown it in both lime and acidic soils. Light or heavy soils, but free draining.

Shrub border – at the rear – is its best situation, though it can also look quite grand when grown as a well tended lawn bed specimen. This is particularly so of the coloured leaf varieties.

Whilst they generally have a lax, upright habit of growth, Weigelas are generally clothed with foliage from drooping branches right down to ground level.

Types of Weigela Shubs

Red Flowered Weigela

  • Weigela ‘Bristol Ruby’ is one of the oldest varieties that never fails to please.
  • Weigela ‘Eva Rathke’ is similar, but with a slightly more compact habit.

Pink Flowered Weigela

  • Weigela ‘Abel Carriere’ has been around a long time – deservedly so. It is a dark pink – rather than the red it is sometimes described as being.
  • Weigela florida is dark pink flowered plant having an arching habit so also good ground cover. The flowers fade to pale pink over time. It has two coloured leaved varieties mentioned below, which are always favourites.

Weigela 'Looysmanii Aurea' - Golden foliage with deep pink flowers Foliage Colour Weigela

  • Weigela florida “Foliis Purpureis’ has dark bronze leaves which act as good contrast to the bright pink flowers. Slightly less in height to the others above, with 1.5m height and spread being its aim.
  • Weigela florida ‘Variegata- is sometimes sold as ‘Nana’. It has pale green leaves with attractive creamy yellow markings at edges. Surprisingly, the pink flowers look good against the foliage colour.
  • Weigela ‘Loomansii Aurea has bright yellow foliage with pink, but white throated flowers. It is one of the slowest growers and has arching lax habit. This Weigela grows best with a little dappled shade.

Propagation of Weigela Plants

Very easy to take from cuttings, with semi-ripe tip cuttings in September being easiest method. Just leave them to overwinter after rooting and pot up in spring.

Problems with Weigela

  • It is fully hardy and rarely attacked by any visible pests. Sometimes troubled by leaf eelworm.
  • The browning of leaves that sometimes occur are normally associated with sun or wind scorch, but does no permanent harm.
  • Care should be taken in areas prone to honey fungus, where it can fail.



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