During the spirea trim, cut the back the tips of the stems to the top of the leaf bud. So are bugs, disease, rodent damage, air pollution, road salt and other environmental problems. 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. Now the leaves are dying much earlier than the ones that are still blooming. And ones that add pretty flowers, luminous foliage, and multi-season color give even greater value – like spirea. Spring bloomers can be pruned right after the flowers are gone. How To Plant Bridal Wreath Spirea In The Ground Scroll down for container planting instructions and care tips Sometimes we cause trouble by being TOO nice to our shrubs. While it’s true that lack of phosphorus – the middle number of fertilizer labels – can be a factor in poor blooming, it’s equally true that too much nitrogen (the first number) can cause overly lush foliage at the expense of flowers. Sellmer says he cringes when he sees ads that liquid fertilizer companies run encouraging gardeners to regularly apply fertilizer. What you can do to promote new blooms sooner is to prune off the old spent blooms. Meadowsweets (Spirea) Vanhouttei Spirea. Depending on the species, shrubs range from 2 to 3 feet tall and about as wide to about 10 feet tall and 10 to 20 feet wide. As the name suggests, you could cut off part of a flowering branch to twine in your hair. But sometimes, the shrub that flowered so profusely in past years is now barely putting out a blooming dribble. It can also be used in floral arrangements. If a sudden cold snap occurs when the holly flowers are opening, it may be enough to kill them before pollination and fruit setting take place. Thankfully, most of the time these shrubs do flower. This species is apparently a hybrid between Spiraea trilobata and Spiraea cantoniensis . Age is another reason for non-bloom. Spireas are some of the easiest flowering shrubs to grow. Fire Blight. That’s a shame, because they can be truly innovative, like Double Play Doozie spirea. Lightly trimming you spirea after blooming will extend this shrub's season of interest. Those two selections are outstanding hedges left untrimmed and lacy and natural. Answer from NGA October 5, … Spirea Problems Spirea. “Follow the recommendations that come back with the (soil) test and be patient,” says Sellmer. If you pick an early male and a late female, the bloom times might not overlap and pollination won’t occur. Other varieties of spirea, such as Japanese spirea, respond better to pruning in the late winter months. Bees are highly susceptible.”. This happens most often with the early spring-flowering shrubs such as forsythia, azalea and flowering almond, which form their flower buds the fall before. The plant is drought tolerant and has an upright, low and broadly mounded form creating a dense thicket of thin wiry stems. That’s one clue to consider if you have a flowering shrub that used to bloom well but has been going downhill. Summer-bl… Spiraea japonica, or Japanese Spiraea, is a flowering dwarf deciduous shrub with leaves that change color over the season, growing 4 to 6 feet high and as many feet wide. Those buds that formed the fall before might be killed by the cold just as they were getting ready to open, turning them into little mushy brown blobs instead of beautiful flowers. One way to screw up your plant’s nutrition is by over-using a fertilizer high in nitrogen. This shrub re-blooms if deadheaded. The spirea aphid (Aphis citricola) occurs in all areas of the U.S., notes University of Illinois Extension. And these are exactly what makes Double Play Doozie spirea the most beautiful, innovative, ground-breaking spirea to ever grace a landscape. While a lot of shrubs will start blooming within a year or two of being planted, some need more. Spring-bloom spirea produce buds the year before they bloom, which means they blossom on old growth. Also high on the operator-error list is putting the wrong plant in the wrong place – usually in too much shade. That alluring little abelia in the white pot probably will be a lot more grateful anyway. It does not set seed, so it directs all that energy into creating more bright red-pink flowers. Anthony Waterer Spirea blooms heavily during the Spring. Meet the Gardenality Team. Do not wait for the bush to fill out on its own. Well, seedless and non-invasive would be a start; non-stop blooming would be even better. Many flowering shrubs bloom best on fairly young wood – branches that are one to three years old. “You can keep a plant in a continuous vegetative state by hitting it too often with high-nitrogen fertilizers or too much of a balanced fertilizer too often,” he says. Then there is a finer textured and smaller growing spring blooming Spirea called Grefsheim.Although Grefsheim is a different species, it rocks. Astilbe will not flower for the whole of … These buds begin to set the autumn before they … * Shrubs that are best pruned immediately AFTER they’ve bloomed: azalea, beautybush, bittersweet, clematis (spring-blooming varieties), cotoneaster, deutzia, dogwood, enkianthus, flowering almond, forsythia, heath, kerria, lilac, magnolia, mahonia, mock orange, mountain laurel, ninebark, pieris, quince, rhododendron, spicebush, sweetshrub, viburnum, weigela, witch hazel, wisteria. The leaf of spirea is oak-leaved oblong, serrated, dark green above, gray below. Too much shade and plants won't be as full or bloom as heavy. “Get to know the requirements of your plants before you buy them and place them in the landscape,” says Sellmer. When under stress, most often the energy is directed toward solving the imbalance in the system.”. He also suggests a soil test so you won’t be guessing what product to add and how often. Most lawn fertilizers are very high in nitrogen, so if you’re putting down four applications of that right next to your shrub beds, you could be hurting your shrub flowers while you help your grass. tall. Although both types flower, it is the female plants that get the berries. So go ahead and yank out the rebels if they don’t respond to your coaxing. The second pruning should occur in late fall or early spring. If there is a lot of distance and if the branches are weak and “leggy,” that could be a sign that you’re overdoing it. One of the most notable features of the spirea plants is the plant’s long bloom season. There is an abundance of flowers during the spring and will put on another show in the fall when the leaves change colors. Hydrangeas may not bloom until their third season, and wisteria and trumpet vines are notorious for going five to seven years before they bloom for the first time. * Shrubs that are best pruned in winter or early spring before new growth starts: abelia, arborvitae, barberry, beautyberry, boxwood, burning bush, butterfly bush, chastebush (vitex), clematis (summer-blooming varieties), crape myrtle, euonymus, heather, holly, honeysuckle, hydrangea (summer-blooming varieties), potentilla, pyracantha, roses, rose of sharon, snowberry, St. John’s wort, spirea (Bumald and Japanese types), summersweet, Virginia sweetspire. The theory is that the plant “thinks” its life might be endangered so it quickly tries to produce flowers in one last effort to procreate itself with the ensuing seed or pollen. Spirea that’s not pruned or pruned to the ground each spring has a casual, loose habit. If all else fails, some shrubs (especially wisteria) respond to the rather drastic action of root pruning – severing about half of the plant’s roots about a foot out from the trunk. For the best flower production and foliage density, choose a planting sit for Bridal Wreath Spirea in full to mostly sun, however plants will tolerate some light shade. Dark green, diamond-shaped leaves to 112 inches long may turn purplish in fall. Important! One other berry-stopping possibility is a late spring frost. One other factor that sometimes plagues early-spring bloomers is a heavy-duty late frost. This pruning will usually be a more drastic trim and you will remove more plant material from the plant … Oak-leaved spirea is grown separately … After removing old branches in April, the plant will still create new ones by the beginning of flowering in July. Sometimes it’s not one big thing going wrong but a combination of these “smaller” things. There is no Viagra for plants to get them producing immediately. Sellmer also advises planting other flowers that bloom at the same time as hollies to provide other pollen sources to help attract bees. Garland spirea rarely needs much trimming, but if you want to tidy up the shape, cut it back right after the flowers fade. That’s something that frequently goes wrong with winterberry hollies, the smooth-leafed types that drop their leaves in winter. Click here to learn how to give a great answer ». This shrub has raspberry or white flowers. Arching branches bear abundant flowers before the leaves emerge. If you’re only familiar with the traditional bridal wreath spirea, a large shrub that can become ungainly if not pruned, you’ll love the versatility and carefree nature of the newer spirea cultivars showcased here. As branches age, they flower less and may even stop flowering at some point. 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