How to Plant and Grow Weigela

This shrub has pretty summer flowers as well as colorful foliage.

The perennial weigela puts on a show of red or pink blooms in spring and early summer and fades into the background as the seasons change. Weigela sizes can range from 1 to 6 feet tall, depending on the variety. These plants are also quick growers, reaching their full size after just a few seasons. They're hardy in zones 4-9, so they'll grow just about anywhere in the United States.

Along with variations in weigela sizes, it comes in many foliage colors. Colors can range anywhere from green and gold to deep burgundy while showing a glossy finish. Shades of red and pink are still the dominant colors of weigela blooms, but new varieties have white and yellow options.

Weigela Overview

Genus Name Weigela florida
Common Name Weigela
Plant Type Shrub
Light Part Sun, Sun
Height 1 to 3 feet
Width 18 to 72 inches
Flower Color Pink, Red, White, Yellow
Season Features Spring Bloom, Summer Bloom
Special Features Attracts Birds, Good for Containers, Low Maintenance
Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
Propagation Stem Cuttings
Problem Solvers Drought Tolerant

Where to Plant Weigela

Weigelas aren't too picky on planting location, but full sun is best for the biggest flowers and deepest foliage color. They don't do well in wind, so protect them with a wall or other structure.

How and When to Plant Weigela

It's best to plant weigela in late fall, so the roots have time to form over winter. It can be planted in early spring, as long as the hot weather doesn't come too quickly. Don't plant in the summer when it's too hot for weigela to root correctly.

Water the weigela shrub in its container before transplanting to the ground. Dig a hole for the plant that's the same height and two to five times the width of the root ball. Cut the roots loose from their bindings. Fill the hole with backsoil to cover the roots and thoroughly water the soil. Add mulch to the top of the soil, leaving at least 3 inches between the mulch and the lower branches.

Weigela Care Tips

Once planted and rooted, weigela is an easy shrub to care for.

Light

Weigela loves the sun, so make sure it gets plenty of time to soak up sunlight each day. A little shade is ok, but not too much. The better the sunlight, the brighter the blooms.

Soil and Water

A mildly acidic or alkaline soil pH of 5.5 to 7 is best for weigela. Keep the soil moist and make sure it's well-draining.

Once your shrub is well-established, you don't need to water it as frequently—regular rainfall should be enough to keep it watered. However, your weigela may need additional watering if you're having a hot, dry summer.

Temperature and Humidity

Weigela does fine in almost any temperature, except for freezing cold. It's hardy in nearly every zone in the United States.

Fertilizer

Use a balanced liquid fertilizer once a year for weigela shrubs or pellet shrubs. Fertilize before new growth appears on the plant, usually in early spring.

Pruning

Many dwarf varieties of weigela need almost no maintenance. Simply trim back any dead wood in the spring. Larger types may need pruning throughout the growing season to maintain their shape. However, if you prune in the fall, you risk losing next spring's flowers.

Potting and Repotting Weigela

Keep an eye on the top few inches of soil when planting weigela in a pot. When it dries out, you'll need to water it. Keep potted weigela in full to part sun, whether indoors or out. This low-maintenance plant will grow well when potted.

Pests and Problems

Other than ordinary garden pests like aphids or spider mites, weigela doesn't have many problems to be concerned about. If you spot pests, use a natural insecticide to get rid of them.

How to Propagate Weigela

Propagate weigela by taking a 12-inch cutting just below a pair of leaves right after the first frost of fall or early spring before leaves appear. Dip in root hormone and place in soil, either in pots or in the ground. Make sure the soil doesn't dry out. It can take a while for propagated stems to begin to grow.

Types of Weigela

'Briant Rubidor' Weigela

briant rubidor weigela blooms
Greg Scheidemann

Weigela florida 'Briant Rubidor' bears green-and-yellow variegated foliage and wine-red blooms on a shrub that grows 7 feet tall. Zones 5-8

'Eyecatcher' Weigela

eyecatcher weigela
Marty Baldwin

Weigela 'Eyecatcher' offers bold, variegated foliage on a compact shrub that grows to 2 feet tall and wide. It produces deep red flowers in late spring. Zones 4-8

'Ghost' Weigela

ghost weigela blooms

Weigela florida 'Ghost' offers chartreuse foliage that pales to a shiny pale yellow in summer and deep red flowers. It grows 4-5 feet tall and wide. Zones 4-8

My Monet Weigela

my monet weigela
Denny Schrock

Weigela florida 'Verweig' is a compact combination of green, rose, and white variegated foliage that sparkles in the shade. Pink blooms appear in summer. It grows 18 inches tall and 2 feet wide. Zones 4-8

'Polka' Weigela

polka weigela blooms
Todd Dacquisto

Weigela florida 'Polka' is a vigorous shrub that grows 5 feet tall and wide and features yellow-throat, pink flowers continuously from early summer to early fall. Zones 4-7

'Red Prince' Weigela

red prince weigela blooms
Lynn Karlin

Weigela florida 'Red Prince' produces red flowers on arching stems in late spring then again in late summer. It grows 5-6 feet tall and 4-5 feet wide. Zones 4-7

Variegated Weigela

variegated weigela blooms
Bill Stites

Weigela florida 'Variegata' offers green leaves edged in creamy yellow that turn white as the leaves age. It's a refreshing effect in shade gardens. It grows 5 feet tall and wide. Zones 5-8

Wine and Roses Weigela

wine and roses weigela blooms
Marty Baldwin

Weigela florida 'Alexandra' features burgundy foliage and rose-pink flowers in late spring. It grows 4-5 feet tall. Zones 4-8

Companion Plants for Weigela

Peonies

Like weigela, peonies love full sun but will grow in partial shade. Its growing season is the same as weigela.

Iris

Iris is an easy-to-manage perennial with brilliant color that can grow up to 12 inches high. It's hardy in zones 3 to 9, making it adaptable to almost any garden.

Spiria

Spiria, a shrub, has the same soil and sun needs as weigela. It comes in many colors and sizes, but newer varieties are easier to maintain than older.

Garden Plan For Weigela

Island Bed

island bed with weigela illustration
Mavis Augustine Torke

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How should I use weigela in my yard?

    Weigela makes a wonderful hedge, with its bright flowers and abundant growth. Some types of low-growing weigela work well as groundcover for a sloping yard. Use a dwarf variety as a low boundary along a path.

  • Does weigela attract wildlife?

    Hummingbirds, bees and other pollinators are drawn to weigela's bright flowers. Planting weigela will invite wildlife to your garden, but deer stay away because they don't eat weigela.

  • Should I deadhead weigela?

    No, there's no need to deadhead weigela. Let them take care of themselves.

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