I carefully plan every plant purchase. Only after I’ve identified a viable open spot in the garden, done extensive research on all of my options and carefully evaluated my budget will I take the plunge.
And if you believe that, well, we need to get to know each other better.
I’m a reckless plant shopper. I grab first and ask questions later. I never have to locate available space in the garden because there is always available space in the garden. That’s rule 4.27 in the garden shopping handbook.
A few years back, while shopping at my local nursery, I spotted a variegated shrub that I assumed was a boxwood or euonymous. Upon closer inspection I was wrong. It was a Diervilla which I’m ashamed to admit I’d never heard of before. The common name is “bush honeysuckle” but that still didn’t help me.
So I put in my cart and bought it and brought it home without any additional research.
That’s how I roll.
I was the proud owner of Diervilla ‘Cool Splash’.
The next day, after some cursory research and a few walks around the garden, I found the spot. A partially shaded location along my front foundation where this section of the garden was screaming for some brightness among all of the green foliage. I squeezed it in right behind some red Heuchera (Coral Bells) and it instantly brought the spot to life.
But let me back up.
Here are some specifics on this deciduous shrub:
Size: 2-3′ high X 2-3′ wide
Exposure: Full to partial sun
Moisture level: Normal
Bloom: Yellow flowers in June-July
Deer resistant: So far yes, but I’m still skeptical
By mid-April, this deciduous variegated shrub starts to break bud.
Within a week or two, it has fully leafed out and the foliage color is at its “whitest” at this time.
While the shrub is listed as 3′ x 3′ at its max size, it does spread through underground rhizomes and can allegedly form a colony. No signs of that yet for me, but I’ll be watching closely.
I have my Diervilla ‘Cool Splash’ next to pink Monarda (Bee Balm) and the bloom color contrasts beautifully with the bright foliage.
The variegated foliage remains on the shrub into November before it falls off.
If I take a step back, and show you this section of the garden from a distance, you can get a better feel of this shrub’s impact.
Here it is in late summer.
And in the middle of fall.
And finally in late fall, still making a statement.
I can only hope that impact increases year after year as the Diervilla ‘Cool Splash’ attains its full size.
What do you think?