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The purple-black foliage of Kodiak Black diervilla, showing its neat opposite arrangement
Closeup of the small yellow flowers of Kodiak Black diervilla being pollinated by a bumblebee.
Kodiak Black diervilla in autumn, showing its red seed heads and red fall color on its foliage.
a specimen of Kodiak Black diervilla in a landscape.

Diervilla Kodiak® Black - Bush Honeysuckle

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We love this shrub! Kodiak Black diervilla (Diervilla rivularis) is definitely not the showiest plant we offer, but it is one of the hardest-working, and it simply looks great without you having to lift so much as a finger. In spring, neat purple-black leaves emerge, directly across from each other, along the long, straight stems. The foliage keeps that color, and its especially vivid on the new growth - so much the better to contrast with the hundreds of bright yellow flowers that pepper the plant in summer. The blooms attract butterflies, hummingbirds, and all sorts of pollinators, thanks to their high level of nectar and near-constant presence, and the foliage hosts the larvae of hummingbird moths

We love this plant combined with the yellows of our native perennials, like goldenrod or helianthus; it also makes a fabulous match with agastache or pink butterfly bushes.

Check out the other colors in the Kodiak diervilla series here.

Vital details:

Plant size: 3-4' tall and wide

Light: full sun (6+ hrs/day), part sun. Grows in a good amount of shade, but not as colorful, and flowering is diminished.

Water: Average moisture

Hardiness: USDA zone 4-7 (Find your hardiness zone)

Pollinator value: flowers attract butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinators; foliage hosts the caterpillars of hummingbird moths.

Notable features: drought tolerant, long blooming, native.

Care notes: Overall, this durable plant needs little pruning, but can be trimmed as needed. Major pruning is best done in spring. We have found that deer may eat this plant but rarely cause any significant or disfiguring damage, and it always seems to rebound quickly.

Pot size: one quart

Plant name: Diervilla rivularis 'SMNDRSF' pp#27,550, cbr#5938

Customer Reviews

Based on 1 review
Shelly S.
Grows beautifully

Looked great on arrival. Took to the area quickly and has new growth already started.