How to Grow Spirea Arguta - Plant Care & Tips

By NorwichGardener Team   /   2024

Spirea arguta is a plant that is native to Asia and northern China. It is a deciduous shrub that can grow to be about 6 feet tall and 8 feet wide. The leaves of the spirea arguta are ovate shaped and are a green color. The flowers of the spirea arguta are white and they grow in clusters. The spirea arguta blooms in the summertime.

How to Grow Spirea Arguta - Plant Care & Tips

Alternative name

  • Spirea arguta
  • Bridal wreath spirea
  • Japanese meadowsweet
  • Meadowsweet
  • Vanhoutte spirea

Things to Know

  • Spirea arguta is a deciduous shrub native to East Asia.
  • It grows to 2-3 m (6-8 ft) tall and has ovate to lanceolate leaves with toothed margins.
  • The flowers are white, borne in corymbs of 5-10 blooms.
  • The fruit is a small, red drupe.
  • Spirea arguta is commonly known as the Korean spirea or bridal wreath spirea.
  • It is grown as an ornamental plant for its showy flowers and attractive foliage.
  • The cultivar 'Plena' has double flowers and is especially popular.
  • Spirea arguta is tolerant of a range of soil types and conditions.
  • It is generally pest and disease free.
  • Spirea arguta can be propagated from seed or cuttings.

Related plant:
Spirea Japonica Anthony Waterer

How to Grow

  1. For spirea arguta, first step is to choose the appropriate location. The plant prefers full sun to partial shade, and well-drained soil.
  2. Prepare the planting area by removing all weeds and grasses within a 3-foot radius of where the spirea arguta will be planted.
  3. Use a shovel or tiller to loosen the top 2-3 inches of soil in the planting area.
  4. Mix in a 2-inch layer of compost or organic matter.
  5. Dig a hole that is twice the width and depth of the plant’s root ball.
  6. Place the plant in the hole and backfill with the excavated soil.
  7. Water the plant deeply and thoroughly immediately after planting.
  8. Apply a 2-inch layer of mulch around the plant, but keep it away from the stem.
  9. Water the plant regularly during the first growing season to keep the soil evenly moist.
  10. Prune spirea arguta in late winter or early spring before new growth begins.

Related plant:
Reeves Spirea

Considering the Soil

About soil condition, Spirea arguta prefers well-drained soils with a neutral to slightly acidic pH. It is adaptable to a range of soil types, but sandy or loamy soils are best. The plant is relatively drought-tolerant once established, but regular watering during extended periods of hot, dry weather will help to keep it looking its best.

Light requirement

Similar to other spirea shrubs, the spirea arguta requires full sun in order to thrive. In fact, it is recommended that this shrub be given at least six hours of sunlight each day. If it does not receive enough sun, it will not produce as many flowers. Additionally, the leaves may become pale and the overall shrub may appear unhealthy.

Ideal Temperature

The temperature condition that is most favorable for the growth of Spirea arguta is a temperature range between 18 to 24 degrees Celsius. This shrub is native to East Asia and prefers full sun to partial shade. It is not tolerant of high temperatures and can be damaged by temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius. Spirea arguta can be found in forests, woodlands, and along roadsides in China, Japan, and Korea.

Humidity Requirement

Ideal humidity condition for this plant is moderate. It does not like too much moisture or too little moisture. If the humidity is too low, the leaves may start to turn brown and curl. If the humidity is too high, the leaves may start to yellow and drop off.


Discussing fertilizer, this type of plant does best with a slow-release fertilizer that is applied in early spring. Be sure to follow the directions on the fertilizer package. When it comes to watering, the roots of these plants are very shallow. Therefore, they need to be watered regularly, especially during hot, dry periods. A good rule of thumb is to water the plants deeply once a week.

Plant Pruning

Pruning spirea arguta is best done in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. Cut back all of the previous year's growth to about 6 inches (15 cm) from the ground. This will encourage new growth and produce a fuller plant.

The Propagation

Propagation is easy from both softwood and hardwood cuttings in late spring or early summer. For hardwood cuttings, take 4- to 6-inch (10-15 cm) long cuttings from the current year's wood. For softwood cuttings, take 6- to 8-inch (15-20 cm) long cuttings from new growth. Dip the cut end of the hardwood cuttings in rooting hormone powder and place them in a propagating tray or pot filled with moist sand, perlite, or vermiculite. Softwood cuttings can be placed directly into the propagating tray or pot. Cover the tray or pot with a clear plastic bag and place it in a bright, warm location but out of direct sunlight. The cuttings will root in 4-8 weeks. Once they have rooted, harden them off for a week and then transplant them into individual pots. Softwood cuttings can be transplanted directly into the garden.

Growth Speed

Usually, the plant growth rate studies have been conducted in Germany. In a 6-week study, the average daily growth rate was 3.8mm. In a 12-week study, the average daily growth rate was 4.2mm. In a 28-week study, the average daily growth rate was 4.5mm.

The Problems

Common problems for this kind of plant are powdery mildew, leaf spot, and rust. These can be caused by several different fungi, and they often attack the plant in wet weather. The best defense against these diseases is to keep the plant healthy and to water it only at the base, so that the leaves don't stay wet. If you see any of these problems, you can treat them with a fungicide.

Basics of Growing

  • Make sure to plant Spirea arguta in an area that receives full sun.
  • This shrub prefers well-drained soil.
  • When planting, mix in some compost to help the soil retain moisture.
  • Spirea arguta can be susceptible to powdery mildew, so make sure to plant in an area with good air circulation.
  • Cut back the shrub in late winter or early spring to promote new growth.
  • Fertilize Spirea arguta in early spring with a balanced fertilizer.
  • Water the shrub regularly, especially during periods of extended drought.
  • Mulch around the base of the plant to help keep the soil moist.
  • Control any weeds that may compete with the Spirea arguta for moisture and nutrients.
  • Check for pests and diseases regularly and take steps to control them if necessary.

Alternative Plants

  • Spirea arsenalensis (Arsenal Spirea)
  • Spirea beauverdii (Beauverd Spirea)
  • Spirea betulifolia (Birchleaf Spirea)
  • Spirea callosa (Hardleaf Spirea)
  • Spirea corymbiflora (Corymb Spirea)
  • Spirea densiflora (Meadow Spirea)
  • Spirea dioca (Fly Honeysuckle)
  • Spirea douglasii (Douglas Spiraea)
  • Spirea emodii (Mountain Fly Honeysuckle)
  • Spirea filipendula (Dropwort Spirea)

Garland Spirea - Spiraea x arguta | North Carolina Extension …
Spirea | Home & Garden Information Center - Clemson University
Spirea/Hardhack - The North Creek Wetland - UW Bothell

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Reviewed & Published by Richelle
Submitted by our contributor
Shrubs Category