One shrub that has become the backbone to my garden is Weigela. I planted my first one eight years ago as a 1 gallon size and it has grown into a beautiful shrub in the garden. Not only does it have wonderful flowers in the spring but interesting leaf color during rest of the year. As the years have passed, I have added more the twenty Weigela shrubs of different leaf color and bloom color into the gardens. This year they were just spectacular. Weigela is an Asiatic plant sometimes listed and formerly known as Diervilla. It grows in any reasonable garden soil in sun to part shade. Weigela grows six to seven feet tall and needs space for it's arching stems. The flowers appear in May and June. Flowers range from light pink to a dark ruby color with leaves being green, variegated green and white, dark chocolate color and lemony yellow. I use the leaves of the shrubs to add color to my mixed perennial beds. The growth rate for this shrub is medium to slow depending on the variety. There have been many new introduction of this plant that are much smaller than the older varieties of Weigela. I just added four "My Monet" Weigelas to the garden last year that will grow only 12 to 18 inches tall and 24 inches wide. Weigela can be propagated by cuttings in autumn. This is also a shrub that is attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds and it is hardy to zone 4. Give this shrub a try in your garden this year.