(Ninebark)Â Summer Wine® is aÂ great plant that has attractive wine colored foliage and a dense, compact habit. It's an exciting improvement of Ninebark; Summer Wine® combines the fine texture and compact branching of 'Nana' with the dark foliage of Diabolo. It's a strong grower, it's never leggy or out of control, and its smaller than other Ninebark varieties. This North American native has dark purple-red leaves and pinkish-white button-like flowers in mid-summer.Â Summer Wine®Â produces fruit in the fall that is very beautiful. This shrub has few, if any, pest problems. Pruning and other maintenance is rarely needed. It adds beautiful color and vibrancy to your garden. Use it next to yellow and bright green plants, or against a light background to get the best effect. This is a prize landscape shrub, but is also great in containers. The branches, with or without flowers may even be cut for the use in arrangements. As a young plant it is best to prune or pinch your plant in order to build a full-bodied, well-branched plant. If the plant is leggy when you purchased it, shear the plant back hard by 1/3 to 1/2 its original size. Once it puts on an inch or two of growth, pinch the branch tips to remove just the growing tips, these tips control branching. Once growing tips are removed the buds below it will turn into stems. Once these new branches grow an inch or two, pinch the tips out again. You can repeat this throughout the first growing season as you are tending your garden. Although you will sacrifice blooms, this technique results in a well-branched, full-bodied plant that will have more flowers in subsequent years. The second season in the ground, repeat the pinching practice (or lightly shear) up until mid-August. Stop pruning after mid-August, because the flowers are on old wood this would allow time for the flower buds to form prior to winter. During the third and subsequence seasons, prune or pinch as necessary after flowering and before buds set in mid-August. Do not be afraid to prune or shear your plant harder if you wish to maintain a shorter size. Patent Strings: Summer Wine® Physocarpus opulifolious 'Seward'