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The Double Play® Dolly™ Spirea is a captivating and versatile shrub that offers a multitude of attributes, making it a valuable addition to any garden. As a deciduous shrub, it undergoes a delightful transformation with each season. It falls into the short height category, with a garden height and spread ranging from 18 to 30 inches, which allows it to fit seamlessly into various garden spaces, from borders to containers.
One of the most notable characteristics of this spirea is its dynamic color palette. The foliage is a standout feature, displaying a vibrant chartreuse-yellow shade that illuminates the garden. This foliage forms a striking backdrop to the spirea's flowers, which are a vivid purple, adding a splash of color in the summer and late spring. These blooms are particularly attractive to bees and butterflies, enhancing the garden's biodiversity.
The Double Play® Dolly™ Spirea offers a range of landscaping uses due to its vibrant colors, compact size, and easy-care nature, making it an excellent choice for various garden designs and purposes:
- Border Plantings: Its compact growth habit and striking color changes make it perfect for border plantings, adding a vivid edge to garden beds or walkways.
- Container Gardening: This spirea's moderate size and showy foliage and flowers make it suitable for container gardening, adding a splash of color to patios, balconies, or entryways.
- Edging Plant: Its uniform growth and colorful foliage make it ideal for edging along paths or garden beds, providing a neat, colorful boundary.
- Landscape Accent: The spirea can be used as a focal point in the landscape, especially in small garden spaces where its colorful presence can be appreciated up close.
- Mass Planting: Planting multiple Double Play® Dolly™ Spirea shrubs together can create a dramatic and cohesive display of color and texture, especially effective in larger garden areas.
- Specimen Plant: Its unique color combination of foliage and flowers makes it an excellent specimen plant, drawing the eye and adding interest to the garden.
- Mixed Bed Plantings: The shrub's compatibility with a variety of other plants allows it to be incorporated into mixed beds, where it can complement perennials and other shrubs.
- Wildlife Garden: Its flowers attract bees and butterflies, making it a valuable addition to a wildlife or pollinator garden.
- Deer Resistant Planting: As it is resistant to deer, it can be used in areas where deer browsing is a concern, ensuring the garden remains undisturbed and vibrant.
Each of these uses showcases the Double Play® Dolly™ Spirea's adaptability and ornamental value, making it a versatile and attractive choice for a wide range of gardening projects.
Caring for and planting the Double Play® Dolly™ Spirea involves several key steps to ensure its health and vibrant display in your garden:
- Timing: Plant in early spring or fall to allow the plant time to establish before extreme weather conditions.
- Location: Choose a location that receives part sun to full sun (4 to 6+ hours of sunlight per day).
- Soil: Prefers well-drained soil. Amend heavy clay or sandy soils with compost to improve soil structure.
- Planting Depth and Spacing: Dig a hole as deep as the root ball and twice as wide. Space plants 18 to 30 inches apart to allow for growth and air circulation.
- Watering After Planting: Water thoroughly after planting to settle the soil around the roots.
- Watering: Water regularly during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. Once established, the plant can tolerate occasional dry spells.
- Mulching: Apply a layer of mulch around the base to retain soil moisture and regulate soil temperature.
- Fertilizing: Apply a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring.
- Pruning: Minimal pruning is required. If desired, prune to shape or remove any dead or damaged branches in late winter or early spring. Light trimming after the first bloom can promote new growth.
- Pest and Disease Management: Generally pest-resistant. Keep an eye out for common garden pests and treat as necessary.
- Winter Care: In colder regions (zones 3-4), apply extra mulch around the base after the ground freezes to protect roots from extreme cold.
Tips for Success:
- Location: Ensure the plant receives adequate sunlight for the best foliage color and bloom production.
- Soil Health: Maintain healthy soil with regular organic matter additions.
- Observation: Regularly check the plant for signs of stress or pests and address issues promptly.
- Companion Planting: Consider companion plants that thrive in similar conditions and complement the spirea's colors and growth habit.
By following these planting and care instructions, the Double Play® Dolly™ Spirea will thrive and become a colorful, low-maintenance addition to your garden.
- Plant Type: Shrub
- Watering Needs: Average; requires regular watering but can tolerate less frequent watering once established.
- Botanical Pronunciation: SPI-ree-a X
- Deciduous/evergreen: Deciduous
- Growth rate: Moderate
- Average landscape size: Compact growth; reaches 18-30 inches tall and wide.
- Special features: Border, Container, Landscape, Mass Planting, Edging Plant, Specimen or Focal Point, Attracts Bees and Butterflies, Deer Resistant
- Dramatic Foliage: Colorful foliage that changes from orange-red to chartreuse-yellow
- Foliage color: Chartreuse-Yellow
- Blooms: Summer, Late Spring
- Flower color: Purple
- Flower attributes: Showy Flowers
- Garden style: Cottage, Informal, Traditional
- Design Ideas: Ideal for small garden spaces, front of borders, and as a low hedge. Its vibrant foliage and purple blooms add a splash of color and can be a focal point in a mixed bed. Perfect for creating a lively garden scene when paired with other perennials or shrubs.
- Companion Plants: Compatible with a variety of perennials and shrubs that prefer similar growing conditions. Can be paired with plants that have contrasting foliage colors or textures to highlight its vibrant foliage and flowers.
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