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.
Plant size: 3-4'/1-1.2m 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.
Hardiness: USDA zone 5-7 (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