When we moved into The Mad House, one of the things that needed the least attention was the landscaping. There was painting to be done inside and a roof that needed to be replaced, but the landscaping and hardscaping looked lovely. With one noticeable exception.
This spiral shrub was partially dead when we took ownership and proceeded to shuffle off this mortal coil over the course of the summer. It needed to go.
If you recall, I enlisted your help in deciding what should replace the dead shrub. I had posted here on the blog and on facebook that I was considering azalea, pieris, lavender, or a burning bush as replacements. A facebook friend of mine, who is a great gardener, messaged me and told me about a plant that he was familiar with that would be an even better contender: the wine and roses weigela. Fun name, right?
I did a little research on the plant and checked them out in-store, and I was sold. They are low-maintenance shrubs, easily adaptable to soil conditions, have beautiful dark red/purple leaves and pink flowers, AND they are cheap! We bought our Proven Winner weigela from Home Depot for less than $20.
Weigela prefer well-drained soil and, as you can see, the soil in our yard is pretty clay-y. Clayie? Clayful? Claytastic? Anyway, it’s not ideal for drainage.
By mixing some sand in with the existing soil, we improved the drainage capability for the weigela.
Next my dad broke up the root ball before planting the shrub. Notice that my dad is doing all the actual work, while I just took pictures. This is because he loves me and knows that I don’t like to touch nature.
Since the wine and roses weigela is an easy-going shrub, there is not much to do as far as planting goes. Dig the hole, insert shrub, add dirt.
For more information about this variety of weigela, you can check out HGTVGarden for specifics about hardiness and if it is appropriate for your growing region.
We gave the base of the weigela a wide berth from the landscaping stones so that it would be able to get the water that it needs. Landscaping stones aren’t the best choice for plant beds, but it’s what we inherited from previous owners so it is going to stay for the time being.
I water the weigela every morning (unless it is already raining) to give the shrub a head start on growing. Mid-summer is not the best time to add new plants, but since it is such a hardy plant I think we should be okay.
Removing that one dead plant and replacing it with such a pretty new shrub made a big difference in the curb appeal of our home. I am very happy with our choice of plant and I can’t wait to see it grow and flower!
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