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Deciduous: Physocarpus opulifolius 'Diablo'

Botanical name: Physocarpus opulifolius 'Diablo'

Common name: Diablo Ninebark

also known as (Diablo, Eastern Ninebark)

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Deciduous: Physocarpus opulifolius 'Diablo'
Deciduous: Physocarpus opulifolius 'Diablo'
Deciduous: Physocarpus opulifolius 'Diablo'
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North bend, Wa

at a glance

Soil: dry, alkaline, clay
Zones: 2a thru 7b

winter interest, fall interest, bird attracting, butterfly attracting, bee attracting, drought tolerant

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description for "Deciduous: Physocarpus opulifolius 'Diablo'"

Diablo Ninebark is a multi-stemmed shrub (10' tall and 10' wide) that has alternate, simple deep purple/burgundy leaves with crenate-dentate, obtuse, or acute lobes (in other words, a very pretty ruffled, textured maple leaf like leaves). In the fall the color of the leaves turn a bronzy red. The flowers are white/pinkish born in 1-2" clusters in early June. These flowers are quite attraction but not overwhelming, as they are nestled among the foliage. Flowers are followed by attractive reddish fruit in the fall. The cinnamon brown bark exfoliates in papery strips and is most noticed during the winter months. If you are looking to keep the plant more compact, cut it back in the spring and darker foliage will emerge from new shoots.


'Diablo' is a German cultivar of the North American native Physocarpus opulifolius. The native range grows as far west as Colorado, north to Minnesota, east to New York, and south to Florida. It is commonly used for erosion control on hillsides. The name Ninebark comes from the exfoliating bark, as the bark peels back, the strips are said to resemble the number nine. The Menomini Indians of Northeastern Wisconsin used this bark to produce a drink for female maladies. It was said to clean out the system and turn barren women fertile. Oy!

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