Spirea ‘Little Princess’
* Common name: Spirea ‘Little Princess’
* Botanical name: Spiraea japonica ‘Little Princess’
* What it is: A compact flowering shrub that grows into a neat ball and gets dainty, light pink flowers in June. Often reblooms sporadically the rest of the season. Very heat-, cold- and drought-hardy once established.
* Size: Grows about 3 feet tall and wide with a single annual pruning.
* Where to use: Makes a nice, low-maintenance foundation plant. Also works well lining walkways or massed in border beds or on sunny banks. Can take even brutal heat and sun with almost no water. It’s virtually indestructible, which is why you often see ‘Little Princess’ in commercial settings.
* Care: Almost none. Seldom gets any pest or animal damage. Water the first year but then ‘Little Princess’ can withstand summer-long droughts with no water. Trim whole plant back to ankle high at the end of winter. Give a “haircut” with hedge clippers right after first main flush of flowering is done to keep plant neat and clean the rest of the season.
* Great partner: Makes a nice contrast in front of tall evergreens, such as arborvitae, holly or Douglas firs. A good color-coordinated flower is purple petunias, which can go in front of or between ‘Little Princesses.’ Salvia ‘Marcus’ is a good perennial partner.