Daphne × transatlantica ‘Summer Ice’

variegated hybrid daphne

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

Perhaps because it is a hybrid, 'Summer Ice' is easy to grow, a claim that cannot be made of many daphnes. Nevertheless, we love daphnes because of their sweetly fragrant flowers, and those of 'Summer Ice' are produced over an extraordinarily long time, sometimes six months. Flowers are champagne-white with an apple-blossom flush, they are borne in clusters at the branch tips. Flowering begins in early April and can continue as late as November. In addition, its small, grey-green leaves are edged with a thin line of ivory-white. In cold winters it is completely deciduous, in average winters it retains about half its leaves. Use it along walkways, at entries or by itself in a container. It looks great with dark-foliage plants and also looks sharp just on its own.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: shrub

Foliage Type: semi-evergreen

Plant Height: 4 ft. 0 in. (1.22 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 6 ft. 0 in. (1.83 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 0 ft. 0 in. (0.00 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 0 ft. 0 in. (0.00 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 6 to 8

Flower Color: white

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun to light shade

Water Requirements: occasional watering

Wildlife Associations: bees, butterflies

Resistant to: deer

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: blue, dark green

Great Color Partners: cream, purple, rose

Culture Notes
This daphne will perform well in sandy or well-drained soil with full sun to light shade. Once established it will only need occasional summer watering. Daphnes do not like to be transplanted and often sulk in containers. Expect plants to be slow the first year or two in the garden but to grow more robustly thereafter. These are generally short lived plants that maintain a nice habit for 10 to 20 years and then need replacement. Growing them with limited fertilizer and in a sunny location can prolong their lives. This daphne is semi-evergreen, but can drop all of its foliage after a cold snap. It will fully leaf out again in the spring. The naturally dense, twiggy habit requires little pruning.