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Common ninebark Physocarpus opulifolius

Phonetic Spelling
fih-soh-KAR-pus op-yoo-lih-FOH-lee-us
Description

A plant that will do well in full sun, but appreciates some shade in its southernmost locations.  If needed, prune just after blooming, but no later than mid-August.  Can be cut to the ground in the winter to rejuvenate.  It can be found growing on rocky hillsides and banks of streams as well as moist thickets.

Its exfoliating bark is at its best in the winter when foliage does not cover.  The common name comes from the layers of bark, said to be 9 layers.

East to transplant.

The cultivars that are the purple-leafed type appear to lose the intensity of the purple when exposed to sunlight for longer periods of the day.

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Burgundy Candy"
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Caramel Candy'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Center Glow'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Coppertina'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Dart's Gold'
    Dwarf yellow foliage form.
  • 'Lady in Red'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Lemon Candy'
    Chartreuse leaves 2-2 1/2' tall, 2-3' wide.
  • 'Luteus'
    8-10' tall, leaves initially yellow. When grown in full sun, leaves gradually change to yellowish-green or light green.
  • 'Monlo' = 'Diablo' = 'Purple Ninebark'
    The leaves emerge a deep purple.
  • 'Nanus'
    Similar to var. intermedius, but smaller 2' tall and wider.
  • 'Nugget'
    More dense than 'Dart's Gold', 6' tall and wide.
  • 'Snowfall'
    Green-leaved form, dense habit, 7'
  • 'Summer Wine'
    Purple leafed type
  • var. intermedius
    Smaller and more dense, 4' tall.
  • var. nana
Tags:
#showy flowers#deciduous#drought tolerant#riparian#facultative#wetlands#rocky soil#wet sites#disease resistant#clay tolerant#cpp#dry soil tolerant#insect pest tolerant#native garden
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Burgundy Candy"
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Caramel Candy'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Center Glow'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Coppertina'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Dart's Gold'
    Dwarf yellow foliage form.
  • 'Lady in Red'
    Purple leafed type
  • 'Lemon Candy'
    Chartreuse leaves 2-2 1/2' tall, 2-3' wide.
  • 'Luteus'
    8-10' tall, leaves initially yellow. When grown in full sun, leaves gradually change to yellowish-green or light green.
  • 'Monlo' = 'Diablo' = 'Purple Ninebark'
    The leaves emerge a deep purple.
  • 'Nanus'
    Similar to var. intermedius, but smaller 2' tall and wider.
  • 'Nugget'
    More dense than 'Dart's Gold', 6' tall and wide.
  • 'Snowfall'
    Green-leaved form, dense habit, 7'
  • 'Summer Wine'
    Purple leafed type
  • var. intermedius
    Smaller and more dense, 4' tall.
  • var. nana
Tags:
#showy flowers#deciduous#drought tolerant#riparian#facultative#wetlands#rocky soil#wet sites#disease resistant#clay tolerant#cpp#dry soil tolerant#insect pest tolerant#native garden
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Physocarpus
    Species:
    opulifolius
    Family:
    Rosaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Root Cutting
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Central and eastern North America
    Fire Risk Rating:
    medium flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts birds and bees
    Dimensions:
    Height: 5 ft. 0 in. - 8 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 6 ft. 0 in. - 10 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Shrub
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Arching
    Dense
    Erect
    Multi-stemmed
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Wet
    Available Space To Plant:
    6-feet-12 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Description:
    Drooping clusters (seed capsules), round in shape
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Pink
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Corymb
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Clusters of white-pinkish flowers in late spring
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Orbicular
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    3-5 lobed leaves
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Surface/Attachment:
    Exfoliating
    Bark Description:
    Mature branches experience exfoliation. Strips of bark will peel to reveal layers of reddish-brown inner bark.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Lawn
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Recreational Play Area
    Slope/Bank
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Barrier
    Border
    Hedge
    Mass Planting
    Screen/Privacy
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought