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Powerhouse Plant For All Seasons - Kolkwitzia Dreamcatcher

Kolkwitzia Dreamcatcher - a Powerhouse Plant for All Seasons. Images ©GardenPhotos.comThis is my third monthly piece about Powerhouse Plants, Plants For All Seasons which don’t flare and fade with two weeks of flowers and fifty weeks of boring leaves. These are plants which provide color and interest for at least two seasons of the year and not just a quick flush of flowers. So when you look at a plant in flower at the nursery or in a catalog, always ask: What else does it do?

My new book, Powerhouse Plants, includes details of over five hundred plants that do something else at another season. And every month in Gardener’s World, Britain’s top-selling garden magazine (and also available in the US) I focus on one very special Plant For All Seasons, highlighting three features which bring color to the garden at different times of the year. And every month here on my Transatlantic Gardener blog I bring you details of yet another – this time, Kolkwitzia amabilis Dreamcatcher (‘Maradco’).

Basically, this is a much improved version of a familiar beauty bush, Kolkwitzia amabilis, which flowers for just a few short weeks in late spring and early summer. Dreamcatcher adds months of fascinating changing foliage color.

In spring, the new shoots are coppery red, then the foliage turns yellow as it matures. Later, it becomes chartreuse with gold hints through summer and in the autumn, and it changes again becoming orange and gold in a final fall flourish.

In my experience Dreamcatcher also makes a lower, more spreading plant than ‘Pink Cloud’, the usual form seen, and the larger of our two seven year old specimens is about 3ft/90cm high and noticeably wider. More widely grown in North America than in Britain, British gardeners should hunt it out.

You can read more about Kolkwitzia amabilis Dreamcatcher (‘Maradco’) in a blog post here back in 2010.

Please take a look at Plants For All Seasons in Gardeners World magazine each month. And check back here for occasional posts about other Powerhouse Plants – the Plants For All Seasons.

You can order my book, Powerhouse Plants in Britain from

You can order my book, Powerhouse Plants in North America and the rest of the world from

 Or you can find out more about the book at the Powerhouse Plants webpage.

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