Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Diabolo’
The dark purple foliage of this ninebark is spectacular in the mixed border. Its loose habit is the perfect host for summer-flowering clematis, for the clematis flowers shine against the dark foliage of 'Diabolo'. Grow it with shrub roses and perennials, such as Thalictrum delavayi 'Hewitt's Double', Penstemon 'Blackbird' a and the glaucous-leaved Parahebe perfoliata. It combines well with ornamental grasses, such as Miscanthus sinensis 'Morning Light' and Stipa gigantea. For dramatic effect add golden- or silver- variegated plants like its base: Molinia caerulea ssp. caerulea 'Variegata' or Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola'. Let chartreuse Geranium 'Ann Folkard' scramble up through ninebark's purple leaves. This cultivar was selected in Japan and introduced through England by Heronswood and Monrovia nurseries.
Colors & Combos
Great Color Contrasts: orange, silver, gold
Great Color Partners: dark green, bronze
Culture NotesThis useful shrub grows well in moist to well-drained soil, but it will tolerate a wide range of conditions including sandy sites and clay. Plant it in full sun to open or light shade. The more sun it receives the richer the foliage. Once established it will only need occasional watering during dry weather. Little pruning is needed. The older twiggy canes can be removed, leaving the young whips which flower the best and grow robustly.
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Plant Type: shrub
Foliage Type: deciduous
Plant Height: 8 ft. 0 in. (2.44 m.)
Plant Width/Spread: 8 ft. 0 in. (2.44 m.)
Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9
Flower Color: white
Sun/Light Exposure: full sun or light to open shade
Water Requirements: occasional watering