Spiraea nipponica 'Snowmound' - Snowmound Nippon Spirea
Family: Rosaceae

Hear the scientific name

Spiraea nipponica 'Snowmound' is a low-arching shrub that is urban tolerant and has pure white inflorescences that blanket the plant in late spring. Snowmound Nippon Spirea is a compact and later-flowering complement to Vanhoutte Spirea (Spiraea x vanhouttei). It is one of the few small shrubs with a vased and arching growth habit.

Alternate common name: Snow Mound Nippon Spirea

F   E   A   T   U   R   E   S
  form Form

-small ornamental shrub

-maturing at about 5' tall x 5' wide

-upright vased growth habit in youth, quickly becoming arching with age

-medium growth rate

foliage Foliage

-blue-green, alternate, elliptical to narrowly obovate, about 1" long, with essentially no petiole, and sparsely serrated or notched at the apex of the leaf blade

-autumn color is green to yellowish green and ornamentally ineffective


-white inflorescences of 1" diameter cover the arching foliaged stems of the shrub in late May, like a mound of snow (hence the name)


-many small clusters of greenish-brown miniature fruits cover the arching stems in summer and are persistent into the following year

-not at all ornamental but noticeable and slightly detracting from the foliage and growth habit of the shrub


-dark brown-burgundy and ridged, with many stems originating from the base of the shrub and forming a vased to arching growth habit

-many short, thin, and dense lateral twigs from which most of the flowers and fruits arise


-not applicable

C   U   L   T   U   R   E


-full sun to partial shade

-performs best in full sun in moist, well-drained soils, but is very urban tolerant and adaptable to poor soils, clay soils, dry soils, soils of various pH, heat, drought, and heavy pruning

-propagated primarily by rooted stem cuttings

-Rose Family, with numerous potential diseases and pests, which usually do not manifest themselves

-'Snowmound' is abundantly available in container form

-the numerous small dried fruits and pedicels can be easily removed in late winter or early spring (before bud break) by grasping the arching stems at their bases with a gloved hand and pulling the hand upward along the stems until the fruiting bodies have fallen away


-zones 3 to 8


-native to Japan

U   S   A   G   E


-showy white inflorescences in late spring

-vased to arching low growth habit

-urban tolerance

-fine textured blue-green foliage


-poor autumn color

-persistent fruiting stalks


-specimen, group planting, informal hedge, border, entranceway, or foundation shrub


-fine texture in foliage and when bare

-average density in foliage and when bare

S   E   L   E   C   T   I   0   N   S

Varieties and Cultivars - Search OSU PlantFacts for additional plants in this species


-urban tolerant dense shrubs of 4-6' in mature height (Berberis x mentorensis, Forsythia 'Arnold Dwarf', Syringa patula 'Miss Kim', Weigela florida 'Variegata', etc.)

-late-spring flowering shrubs (Spiraea japonica, Viburnum dentatum, Weigela florida, etc.)

-small- to medium-sized white-flowering shrubs (Abeliophyllum distichum, Clethra alnifolia, Fothergilla gardenii, Hydrangea arborescens 'Annabelle', Itea virginica 'Henry's Garnet', etc.)


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