I love small shrubs that can take the place of perennials in the garden. Shrubs are generally less demanding than perennials – no deadheading, no cutting back after flowering to maintain form or to prompt another round of blooms, and no dead foliage to remove at the end of the season.
Not just any shrub offers as much color as a blooming perennial, but My Monet® Weigela does it beautifully. Formally named Weigela florida ‘Verweig’, but sold at garden centers as My Monet, it was the first dwarf variegated weigela introduced to the market. It grows slowly to just 12 to 18 inches tall and slightly wider.
My Monet® Weigela shows off sweet, trumpet-shaped, rose-pink flowers in late spring and early summer on old wood (or last year’s stems) and continues to bloom sporadically on new growth throughout the rest of summer, sharing its nectar with hummingbirds.
The flowers are pretty, but I love this cutie for its foliage. Its green leaves are margined with pink, creamy white or a combination of these. The intensity of variegation is dependent on how much sun it receives. In full sun, the leaves will be more pink than white; in part sun, the reverse is true.
Plant My Monet® Weigela in average, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade, but flowering and foliage color is best in full sun. Pruning is rarely needed but if it is necessary, do it right after flowering so buds for next year’s flowers have time to develop. It is rarely bothered by insects or disease, and another plus: deer tend to leave it alone!
There are many ways to take advantage of this shrub in the landscape. Planting it in the perennial border as an accent is just the beginning. It could also be planted as an edging plant, in large swaths and in foundation plantings. Last year, I even planted one in a container along with a catmint (Nepeta ‘Purrsian Blue’), blue fescue (Festuca ‘Elijah Blue’), purple-leaved coral bells and zinnias with bright pink flowers. It not only looked great all summer, but all the plants (except the zinnias) were planted in permanent homes in the garden in fall.
Reportedly, it was named My Monet because the foliage looks as if it was painted in Monet’s impressionistic style. I’m no art expert, but I think Weigela ‘My Monet’ is a masterpiece.
Do you already grow this one? Do you love it as much as I do?
Garden with me!