Help ID this 'black' shrub

whiteforest(6 MI)May 14, 2012

About a month ago when everything was starting to turn green I thought this shrub must have been dead. It's in the very back of my yard, so I went out for a closer look thinking I was going to be digging it up and it was covered in leaves after all. The leaves appear black at a distance, and it's covered in burgundy flower buds right now. It is growing in mostly sun (it gets shade until about 11am). I'd love to know what it is, because I find it to be so strange looking.

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

weigalia .... WAG.. black knight or something like that ...

some 'rejuvenation pruning' ought to get it back into proper form ...

google all that.. and you will find it.. i am in a hurry right now ...


    Bookmark   May 14, 2012 at 3:26PM
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It's pretty scraggly, but it could be either a Weigela 'Dark Horse,' a Weigela 'Fine Wine,' or a Weigela 'Wine & Roses.' Below is a link to a good website. Just type "weiglea" into the search field and you will get several photos and descriptions. If I had to guess, I would say weigela 'Dark Horse.'

Here is a link that might be useful: Type Weigela in the search field.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2012 at 4:43PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

hit the link..

look at the form .. and understand why yours needs help ...

it looks like you have 3 major trunks.. after flower fades.. cut the largest down to about 3 inches from the ground... .. and watch how it reacts with new growth down low ...

in fall.. or next spring.. take the next largest ...

and then the last.. either next spring or fall ...

also.. it is a full sun plant.. and i see shade there ... and that might.. complicate long term vigor and flower production.. not that it will die or anything.. it just might not perform as well as others ..

as you can see from the link.. it has VAST potential.. and if you want to keep it in the 3 to 4 foot range.. you will have to remove large trunks every year or two ..

NEVER.. EVER.. trim this at height.. or it will.. well.. end up like it did.. lol ...

if you move it.. do so after leaf fall in fall ... and give it at least.. a 6 by 6 area .. if not larger .. which would be preferred ...


Here is a link that might be useful: link

    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 9:00AM
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whiteforest(6 MI)

I inherited this shrub when I bought my house last fall. I removed 4 other large shrubs earlier this spring that were choking out this and my rose bush. I'm sure they had something to do with the poor form of this one. It does get shade until 10/11am, then it's in full sun the rest of the day. It's the most sunny location this yard has, so it will have to do.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 11:23AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

8 plus hours of sun is considered full sun.. so that spot should be fine ...

in to little sun.. it will lose its blackness.. and tend toward green ....


    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 12:19PM
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whiteforest(6 MI)

Regarding what to cut back... There are actually 8 canes coming from the crown, and then 2 more growing about 6-8 inches off to one side that look like they come straight out of the ground. They are all woody, and the leaves are sparse, as you can tell from the photos. So, how should I go about cutting this back to make it come back fuller? If I take the 1/3 approach, does it matter if I start in the center or the edges? Would I still start with the larger canes?

    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 1:06PM
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