Weigela is a genus of between six and thirty-eight species of deciduous shrubs in the family Caprifoliaceae, growing to 1 to 5 meters tall. They are native to East Asia. All are natives of eastern Asia. The genus is named after the German scientist Christian Ehrenfried Weigel.
The genus is most closely related to Diervilla, with which it shares (among other characters) two unusual characteristics: flowers with the stamens and style exserted (most of the Caprifoliaceae have flowers with very short stamens and style) and the presence of triplar (in addition to the more usual tetraplar) cytotypes.
These shrubs are greatly admired for their beautiful funnel-shaped flowers that bloom profusely in late spring to early summer. They come in various shades, including pink, red, and white. Weigela is often used as an ornamental garden shrub due to its attractive appearance and ability to attract hummingbirds.
|Botanical Name||Weigela florida|
|Plant Type||Deciduous shrub|
|Mature Size||4 to 5 feet tall, 4 to 5 feet wide|
|Sun Exposure||Full sun to part shade|
|Soil Type||Well-drained soil|
|Hardiness Zones||4 to 8|
|Native Area||East Asia|
Weigela shrubs are generally easy to care for and thrive in a variety of conditions. They prefer well-drained soil, but can tolerate clay or sandy soil as long as there is good drainage. They grow best in full sun to part shade, with at least 6 hours of sunlight per day for optimal flowering.
Regular pruning after flowering helps maintain shape and encourages new growth. Watering should be consistent, especially in the first year as the plant establishes itself. It’s also beneficial to mulch around the base of the plant to retain moisture and keep weeds at bay.
Light Requirement for Weigela
Weigela thrives in full sun but can also tolerate part shade. It requires at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day to bloom profusely. Inadequate sunlight may result in reduced flowering.
Soil Requirements for Weigela
Weigela prefers well-drained soil but is quite adaptable to various soil types, including sandy or clayey soil. Soil pH should be neutral to slightly acidic for best growth.
Water Requirements for Weigela
Weigela requires regular watering, particularly during the first growing season to establish a deep and extensive root system. Once established, it becomes more drought-tolerant, but consistent moisture will promote healthy growth.
Temperature and Humidity
Weigela is hardy in zones 4 to 8 and can withstand cold winters. It is not particularly sensitive to humidity and can adapt to various climate conditions within its hardiness zones.
A general-purpose, slow-release fertilizer applied in early spring can support growth in Weigela. However, over-fertilizing should be avoided as it can lead to excessive growth and reduced flowering.
Pruning should be done right after flowering to shape the plant and remove any dead or weak branches. Regular pruning encourages new growth and helps maintain the shrub’s overall health.
Weigela can be propagated through softwood cuttings taken in late spring or early summer. Cuttings should be rooted in a mix of sand and peat moss.
How To Grow Weigela From Seed
Growing Weigela from seed is a more challenging method and can be time-consuming. Seeds require stratification and should be sown in a well-draining mix, kept at a consistent temperature, and regularly watered.
Common Pests & Plant Diseases
Aphids may infest Weigela, but can usually be controlled with insecticidal soap or other organic methods.
Prone to powdery mildew, this can be prevented with proper air circulation and appropriate spacing between plants.
Common Problems With Weigela
Leaf browning may indicate water stress, either too much or too little. Adjusting watering practices can resolve this issue.
Insufficient sunlight or excessive fertilization may lead to poor flowering. Correcting these factors will usually improve blooming.
In northern areas, winter damage can occur. Providing a sheltered location or winter protection can mitigate this problem.
- Plant Weigela in well-draining soil to avoid waterlogging.
- Prune immediately after flowering to encourage new growth.
- Use mulch to retain soil moisture and suppress weeds.
- Consider planting Weigela near patios or windows to enjoy the hummingbirds they attract.
- Avoid planting in areas with high winds, as the branches can be somewhat brittle.