Content Detail

Old-fashioned bridal wreath spirea is often found in older, established landscapes. This handsome open, loose shrub reaches 4 to 8 feet high and 6 to 8 feet wide. Showy, double white flowers are in clusters of three to six and bloom in mid-spring. The finely serrated small leaves turn a yellow to bronzy-purple in the fall. 

  • Family (English) Rose
  • Family (botanic) Rosaceae
  • Tree or plant type Shrub
  • Foliage Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
  • Native locale Non-native
  • Size range Medium shrub (5-8 feet)
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 4, Zone 5 (Northern Illinois), Zone 6 (City of Chicago)
  • Soil preference Alkaline soil, Moist, well-drained soil
  • Tolerances clay soil, Dry sites
  • Season of interest late spring, early summer, early fall, mid fall
  • Flower color and fragrance White
  • Shape or form Mounded, Open, Upright
  • Growth rate Moderate

Size and form:

Old-fashioned bridal wreath spirea is an open, loose, leggy shrub reaching 4 to 8 feet tall and 6 to 8 feet wide.

Native geographic location and habitat:

It is native to China, Korea, and Japan.

Attracts birds, pollinators, or wildlife:

Its flowers attract butterflies and pollinators.

Bark color and texture:

The bark is slender, smooth, and shiny brown. Stems have a zigzag-zag arrangement.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, texture, and color:

It has alternate, simple, elliptical leaves up to 2 inches long with finely serrated margins. The dark green summer foliage turns yellow to purple in fall.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size:

The showy, double-white flowers are in clusters of three to six with each flower being 1/3 inch in diameter. Flowers appear in March to April before the leaves emerge.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions:

It produces dry dehiscent follicles that are not ornamentally important.

Plant care:

Old-fashioned bridal wreath spirea is best grown in full sun in well-drained soil, but is tolerant of light shade. Bushes tend to sucker which is controlled with pruning immediately after flowering.

List of pests, diseases, and tolerances:

No serious problems, although susceptible to the same insects and diseases that attack other rose family members. Aphids can be washed off with strong spray of water. Powdery mildew can occur in wet springs. It is deer resistant.


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