Stunning Fall Foliage And Year-Round Display From This Compact Nandina Shrub
Prized for its appeal in all four seasons, this smaller version of the original Nandina shrub makes a great addition to your yard or patio.
Nandina domestica ‘Compacta’ is a perennial shrub originally from Japan and China. It has been famously popular there for centuries and is believed to be associated with good luck.
Sometimes called dwarf heavenly bamboo, the evergreen shrub is not actually a bamboo, but its foliage is similar. Regular Nandina domestica is an open, airy shrub. Nandina Compacta cultivars are more dense and branchy, with thicker foliage and shorter stature.
Compacta Nandina foliage is dark green in the summer and changes to bronze or even scarlet-purple in the autumn. Spring flowers are in small, white clusters called panicles at the end of the branches. Sprays of shiny red berries (if a pollinator buddy is present) develop in the autumn and stay on the bush well into winter. They are enjoyed by birds and birdwatchers alike.
A pair of dwarf heavenly bamboo can be used as a specimen planting in a larger perennial bed or plant a larger group to make a Nandina domestica hedge, foundation screen, or even a mass planting.
A group of N. domestica ‘Compacta’ shrubs planted en masse in the corner of your backyard can soften the lines of your property and add natural appeal and depth to your garden design.
Domestica Nandinais an excellent choice for a container garden. They will do well in large pots with good drainage, and fertile potting soil kept slightly moist but not wet. This can be a great way to enjoy ‘Compacta’ if you live in an area that is a bit too cold, but can bring it in to a sheltered location for the winter.
Add some four-season variety and a splash of color to your yard with this Nandina domestica ‘Compacta’.
How to Care For Nandina Domestica Compacta
Nandina domestica ‘Compacta’ is hardy to USDA zone 6 and warmer, up to about zone 11.
Plant your N. domestica ‘Compacta’ in full sun to partial shade. It will survive in full shade but may not flower, and the autumn colors will not be as vibrant.
Tolerant of most soils, N. domestica ‘Compacta’ dislikes pure sand or pure clay. Wet soils with poor drainage are problematic. N. domestica ‘Compacta’ will grow in soil with a wide pH range, from 4.5 to 8.5, making it very adaptable.
Compact Nandina Domestica Size
Dwarf heavenly bamboo shrubs will reach 4-5 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide. They spread by rhizomes, so over time, the base of the shrub will slowly expand. The overall planting will grow wider if not kept controlled.
Dwarf heavenly bamboo rarely needs much pruning. Any pruning should be done in the late winter when the plant is still somewhat dormant.
Occasional long, ‘leggy’ stems or those that have gotten older and lost foliage can be pruned back to the base of the plant to encourage lush new growth.
Don’t remove more than a third of the stems or canes yearly to avoid shocking the plant. If a more significant amount needs to be removed, consider splitting the pruning over two years.
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Sunlight Full Sun / Partial Shade
Mature Width 4-5 ft
Mature Height 3-4 ft
Growing Zones 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11