Spirea is a small ornamental shrub that is often used in the country to decorate personal plots, parks and squares. Landscape designers love it for its beautiful appearance, undemanding care and resistance to diseases. Indeed, planting and caring for a spirea is simple, even a novice florist can easily cope with these tasks.
An overview of the most popular types of spiraea shrubs, photos, planting, the main measures for caring for it - further in the article.
How fast spirea grows
The growth rate of shoots depends on the species, age of the bush, climate and soil fertility, the regularity of watering and dressing. Dwarf species can grow by 10-12 cm per season, large bushes grow by 0.7-1 m per year, and sometimes more.
What is the height of the spirea
The genus Spirea has about 100 species. Among them there are both compact dwarf shrubs that do not grow higher than 15-30 cm, and tall species that reach a height of 2.5 m by the 4th year of life.
The height of an adult bush of the most commonly grown spirea species is shown in the table below.
Height of an adult bush, m
Summer flowering species
up to 2
up to 2
up to 1
up to 2
Spring flowering species
up to 1.5
up to 1.6
up to 0.6
up to 2
up to 1.5
up to 2
When to plant spirea in open ground
Spirea can be planted outdoors in early spring or autumn. It should be borne in mind that spring planting is allowed only for summer-flowering species. In this case, a prerequisite is to find the seedling in a dormant state; there should be no signs of the beginning of the growing season on the bush. In autumn, planting of both spring-flowering and summer-flowering species is allowed. This procedure is done in September.
How to plant a spirea
The spirea planting procedure is not particularly difficult. If you choose the right place and follow the care recommendations, the bush will grow well for 20-40 years.
Where is it better to plant spirea
This plant is very fond of the sun. Even in the southern regions, you need to choose an open, well-lit place for planting it. If the bush is in the shade of buildings or other trees for a long time during the day, then you should not expect a beautiful flowering from it. Only light partial shade is allowed.
The plant does not have any special requirements for the type and composition of the soil. Light fertile soils with good air permeability are best suited for planting it. Clay areas can be improved by adding peat and sand. When planting, you should avoid wetlands, places where rain or melt water accumulates.
Preparation of planting material
This shrub can be propagated independently by seed or by vegetative methods:
- dividing the bush.
Ready-made planting material can be purchased in special stores or nurseries. Spirea seedlings are usually sold with a clay coating of the roots. You need to carefully consider them. The root system should be sufficiently developed, have several taproots and a lobe. Spring seedlings should not have swollen buds, autumn ones - no leaves. An additional plus will be if the seedling is sold in a special container.
To plant seedlings, you need to dig the planting holes in advance. Their depth is approximately 0.7 m, their width is usually made 1/3 more than the size of the roots of the seedling. The pits are prepared in advance, a few days before the planned date of the work. If the soil is not quite suitable, the size of the hole should be increased.
Important! In the soil removed from the pit, you can add a little complex fertilizer, for example, superphosphate.
A drainage layer of broken brick or stones about 20 cm thick is laid at the bottom of the pit. A mound of soil from nutritious soil is poured into the center of the pit. In this form, the pits are left before planting.
How to properly plant a spirea
Before planting, the seedlings must be inspected. If the roots are dry, it is better to keep them in water for a while. A lobe that is too long can be trimmed. The seedling is placed vertically on an earthen mound, poured in the center of the planting pit, and the roots are spread along its slopes. After planting, the root collar should be flush with the ground, so the height of the mound of earth in the hole must be adjusted.
The hole is covered with nutritious soil, lightly tamped to prevent the formation of voids in the roots. After that, the planted bush is plentifully watered, and the root zone is mulched with peat or humus.
Distance between spirea bushes
These plants are planted both individually and in groups. If the shrub is planted as a hedge, the distance between adjacent bushes is 0.3 m.In other cases, low-growing bushes are planted at intervals of 0.7-0.8 m, tall ones - at least 1 m.
Not all shrubs can be transplanted to another place, since this is quite stress for the plant. However, spirea is not one of those.
Is it possible to transplant spirea
This ornamental shrub can be replanted at any age. This can be done as a separate operation, or by combining this event with one of the vegetative propagation methods - dividing the bush.
When to transplant spirea
Adult bushes are transplanted in the fall. The best time for this is the period when the leaves begin to change their color before leaf fall. A cloudy rainy day is chosen for the transplant.
Transplant of an adult spirea
Before transplanting the spirea, it is necessary to carry out a sanitary pruning of the bush, cutting out all dry branches, and also cutting off all skeletal shoots to the bud. If the shrub is transplanted as a whole, it is dug up along with a clod of earth on the roots, transferred to a new place, planted in a planting hole, and then watered abundantly.
How to care for spirea
Quite often, gardeners are skeptical about the need to care for this shrub. This is partly justified, since it is unpretentious and does not require special care. Spirea is a plant that, with the right location, will bloom after planting and without any maintenance. However, some activities will make the flowering more lush and abundant, as well as prolong the youth and lifespan of this beautiful perennial shrub.
Spirea growing conditions
The main activities for the care of this plant are as follows:
- soil mulching;
- top dressing;
- weeding and loosening;
- pre-winter preparation.
How to water spirea
As a rule, there is enough precipitation for this shrub. An exception can be made only for young plants, as well as in dry summers. To maintain normal moisture in the soil, the root zone of each adult bush is watered with 1-2 buckets of water. For stunted forms, the watering rate can be halved.
How and how to feed spirea
Spirea, planted on fertile loose soil, does not need systematic feeding. If the soil is depleted, the bushes can be fed. This is done several times per season, approximately according to the following scheme:
- Early spring. Top dressing with a complex nitrogen-containing fertilizer (urea, nitroammofosk) to stimulate the growth of shoots and green mass. You can use organic matter, such as manure or humus.
- Early summer (June). Top dressing with complex potash and phosphorus fertilizers (potassium sulfate, superphosphate) to stimulate abundant flowering.
- End of summer (end of August). Top dressing with potash and phosphorus fertilizers to prepare for winter.
Important! From August, it is necessary to completely stop the application of nitrogen-containing fertilizers in order not to provoke the growth of young shoots.
When to trim a spirea
The shrub tolerates pruning well, so it is rather difficult to harm it with this procedure. Cutting the spirea increases the splendor of the bush, gives it a well-groomed look, and increases decorative effect. At the same time, the likelihood of developing diseases is significantly reduced, since the shrub begins to let in more light and air.
Spirea can be trimmed throughout the season. In the spring, you need to remove dry and damaged branches during the winter. In summer, shrubs older than 3-4 years old are cut in accordance with the chosen type of crown and kept in this state. Stimulating pruning is carried out, depending on the type of plant, in late spring or autumn.
How to form a spirea
You can start shaping the bush when it reaches the age of 3-4 years. By this time, the plant will have a sufficient number of shoots, a developed root system and will calmly endure a haircut. Summer-flowering spireas form in early spring, spring-flowering ones - in early autumn.
Usually the shrub is given a symmetrical geometric shape.
How to care for spirea after flowering
Spirea care after flowering is very simple. Boxes with seeds that form in place of flowers are best cut if they are not intended to be collected. Such a measure often stimulates the plant to re-bloom. After the spirea has faded, it continues to be trimmed to maintain the selected shape. In late autumn, the bushes are prepared for winter. The plant has good winter hardiness, so the stems are usually simply tied into a bunch, bent to the ground and covered with a layer of fallen leaves.
Depending on the type of plant, flowering occurs in different parts of the shoot. Flowers can cover all branches, their upper part, or only their tips. Flowers are usually collected in inflorescences, which can be of the following forms:
The color range of inflorescences is very wide. Flowers can be white, cream, crimson, pink.
When spirea blooms
By the type of flowering, all types of this shrub are divided into spring flowering and summer flowering. They differ in that in the first flowering occurs on the shoots of the second year of life, and in the second - the first. Spring-flowering spireas bloom quite early. Most of these species bloom in late May. Summer flowering species begin to bloom in July-August.
How many spirea blooms
The flowering of spring-flowering spirits, as a rule, is friendly and not extended in time. It lasts about 3 weeks. The flowering of summer-flowering species is longer, it lasts 6-8 weeks.
Reasons why spirea does not bloom
One of the reasons for the lack of flowers may be too young age of the bush. This plant usually blooms at 4, sometimes at 3 years of age. Often, the first flowering can be limited to the appearance of only a few unblown buds. Another reason may be lack of sunlight. In a closed area, in the shade or even partial shade, the bush may not bloom at all.
Lack of watering can affect flowering if the weather is too dry. A shift in the acid balance of the soil in one direction or another also negatively affects the development of the shrub. When planting a certain variety of spirea, it is imperative to take into account the characteristics of the soil. For example, Wangutta spiraea feels great on alkaline soils, and Douglas spiraea prefers soils with high acidity.
How to plant a spirea by dividing a bush
Dividing a spirea bush is the easiest and most reliable way to breed this ornamental shrub. Due to the abundance of basal growth, the bushes become rather thickened over time. 3-4 years after planting, they can be separated. A more mature bush can also be divided, however, large fibrous roots have to be cleaned from the ground for a rather long time.
It is possible to root spirea delenki both in summer, during prolonged inclement weather, and in autumn. The optimal time for this is September. To divide the bush, it is dug out of the ground, capturing approximately 60% of the crown projection. In this case, some of the horizontal roots will have to be chopped off, this is not scary. The roots must be washed from the ground. This can be done from a hose with a jet of water, or you can simply soak the roots in a large container of water. In an hour, the earth will get wet, and it will not be difficult to wash it off.
The peeled bush is divided into several parts using a garden pruner. Each section should have several shoots and a good lobe. Long cord-like roots can be shortened to match the length of the others. If some of the roots are damaged, then they need to be cut straight off. The finished cuttings are planted in pre-prepared planting pits like ordinary seedlings.
Important! You can divide the bush without digging it out of the ground, however, in this case, it is highly likely that not all delenki will have a good part of the root.
Pests and diseases of spirea
This plant rarely gets sick. Pest insects also do not favor her. Diseases usually develop on weakened plants that have not been properly cared for. Prolonged damp weather contributes to the development of diseases. At this time, fungal infections can develop inside the bush: gray mold and spotting.
To prevent the appearance, you need to regularly cut dry and broken branches inside the bush, this promotes air exchange and removes excess moisture. The fallen leaves, in which the spores of the fungus winter, must be collected and burned in the fall. At the first signs of the onset of the disease, it is necessary to cut out diseased shoots, and treat the bushes with a solution of any fungicide, for example, Bordeaux liquid or copper sulfate.
Of the insect pests, the following most often appear on the bushes:
- Aphid. It sucks out juices from leaves and young shoots. They fight aphids by treating the bushes with tobacco dust.Chemical agents such as Aktelik, Pirimor, etc. can also be used.
- Spider mite. It feeds on plant juices, sucking them out of young leaves. Affected leaves dry up and fall off. Spider mites are especially dangerous in dry summers. Destroyed by spraying the bushes with drugs Karbofos, Phosphamide, Keltan, etc.
- Rose leafworm. Gnaws on the leaves of the plant. Against the leafworm, agents such as Etaphos, Fozalin are used, a good effect is obtained by treating bushes with bitoxibacillin in combination with Pyrimor.
Neighbors for spirea
This ornamental shrub is quite loyal to most garden plants and gets along well next to them. For decorative purposes, it is often planted next to conifers. Herbaceous plants and bulbous flowers get along well next to it. The determining factor here is the harmony of forms and the combination of colors, since this shrub has no obvious antagonists.
Planting and caring for a spirea does not take much time and is not difficult even for novice florists. At the same time, the shrub is able to decorate the territory of any level, from a street square to a country villa. The variety of shapes and types makes it a versatile tool in the hands of a landscape designer, it looks great in individual and group plantings, providing maximum external effect with minimal labor costs for caring for it.