Goldmound spirea is a short little butterball of a shrub. The leaf shape is completely different than the Vanhoutte spirea. These are either small and round, or a larger pointy oval, depending on the age of the stem it’s coming from. Some sources say this is a child of Goldflame spirea, so it shares some traits similar to that.
It has an enormous amount of advantages. It has 3 season interest, with reddish-tipped spouts in the spring, giving way to a bright lemon green shade all summer. While in that almost neon green stage, it flowers – pink clusters in mid-summer. The flowers are more of a bonus than a reason to get this bush, though. The summer color is the main draw, as it really brightens up an area, and gives an unusual backdrop to annuals.
The growth speed is medium for this bush, stopping at around 3.5 ft under ideal conditions. Fortunately, this bush doesn’t demand ideal conditions to look great. It will take a variety of light levels, soil types, and conditions. It is said to be mostly allergy free. Like many of the spireas, it is rarely nibbled on by deer and rabbits, although during a hard winter, all bets are off.
If you don’t like trimming, this is a good bush to get, as it rarely needs to be trimmed to look tidy. The seed pods do not need to be deadheaded as much as some other Japanese spireas, as they are less noticeable, with new growth covering them soon.
I’ve seen very few disadvantages, but there are a few. When young, you may get some new shoots growing at a faster pace than the rest of the bush, requiring them to be trimmed to keep the ball shape. That only has to be done once or twice a year, for the first couple of years, so not a big problem.
If you like variation in your garden, this may not be the best spirea, as that bright color stays fairly constant all summer. There are other spireas that have a similar color at one point, but then change.
Some people want a spirea that is even smaller than this size.
This has been such a popular shrub that it has spawned several kids. These look a great deal like Goldmound, but have slightly different traits such as 1 ft smaller, darker blooms, etc. These do not have the long track record of Goldmound, however. The latest variety isn’t always the best choice – it’s disadvantages aren’t known yet.
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