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How to Grow & Care for Diablo Ninebark

The Diablo Ninebark is a member of the Rosaceae family and a stunning variety of the Physocarpus genus. 

Physocarpus Opulifolius Diablo

Known for its tough overall toughness, the diablo ninebark has grown to become one of the most popular plant choices to come out of the North American wooded areas or rocky river backs. 

The beautiful features deep purple foliage that is blessed with an exfoliating, yet decorative bark and stunning white or creamy blooms that appear alongside the dramatic foliage. 

It makes a great garden piece and is known to attract birds and beautiful-looking butterflies. It is also a great plant to have at home as it can be planted as a single specimen plant or perhaps in groups with a mixture of different shrubs borders.   

Botanical NamePhysocarpus Opulifolius Diablo
Common NamesDiablo Ninebark
OriginNorth America
Plant TypeShrub
Full SizeRanges from 4 feet to 8 feet
Sun ExposureFull or direct sunlight and partial or indirect sunlight
Soil TypeWell draining clay or loam soil, with a slightly acidic level
ToxicityNon-toxic or not yet reported

Diablo Ninebark Care

Caring for the Diablo Ninebark shrub can be easy. Its tough nature and ability to survive all four seasons make it an easy plant to grow and maintain. 

To encourage proper growth and ensure that the Ninebark Diablo shrub thrives, its basic requirements would need to be met. 

Ninebark Diablo Light Requirement
Plant House

Providing the right lighting, watering, pruning and soil type would be essential towards a stable plant growth. But what are these requirements and how do we meet them?

Ninebark Diablo Light Requirement

Knowing how to alternate between providing direct and indirect sunlight to the Ninebark Diablo tree shrub is an essential part of the beautiful plant’s growth. 

Like most Ninebarks, the diablo plant variety requires that you provide it with adequate lighting to encourage a flourishing growth pattern. 

What you should aim for when it comes to providing sunlight for the Ninebark diablo plant should be a minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight during the day, after which you provide shaded, indirect  or partial sunlight for the rest of the day. 

So when picking a space to place your plant, select one that meets these conditions, if the need arises, you can make use of a  light curtain to shield off a little of the sun’s rays after the plant must have had its fill.

Ninebark Diablo Water Requirement

Another known fact about the diablo Ninebark and other Ninebarks in general is that they are drought tolerant. This means they can survive prolonged periods with little water. 

Ninebark Diablo Water Requirement

However, the Diablo Ninebark can also grow in wet conditions, which is part of  the reasons why they are regarded as easy plants to grow and care for. 

The ideal watering condition should be low. Watering can be done once or perhaps twice a week and in most cases should be done during the dry seasons or hot seasons.

Before watering, you would want to feel the soul texture with your finger first. If you notice that the topmost part of the soil is almost dry. Then you can proceed to watering the plant  roots, ensuring you avoid watering the foliage to avoid exposing it to fungal attacks. 

Ninebark Diablo Soil Requirement

The Diablo Ninebark bush can tolerate most soil types, which is also a reason it is regarded as an easy to maintain plant. Whether its clay, loamy or sandy soils, the Ninebark Diablos bush would grow well in it. 

What is most needed when it comes to soil requirements is the level of water draining ability the soil has. An appropriate soil type for Diablo Ninebark would be one that allows the easy passage of water that might be gotten from overwatering the plant while still retaining enough to keep the plant’s root moist.

When it comes to the pH level of the soil, you should aim at a neutral or slightly acidic soil type.  You should make use of organic compost in your soil mix to further strengthen plant root growth.  

Ninebark Diablo Humidity and Temperature Requirement

Although the Ninebark can survive various climates and temperatures, whether hot or cold, it is most advised that you grow your Diabiabl Ninebarks in a cold and cool environment. 

Ninebark Diablo Humidity and Temperature Requirement

This is because a hot and humid climate can open the plant up to various fungal attacks. So an appropriate temperature level to store your Ninebark Diablo would be -40 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Ninebark Diablo Fertilizer Requirement

Fertilizing your Ninebark diablo plant shouldn’t be an everyday affair, you should limit the amount at which you fertilize your Ninebark to at least once during the growing season.

The fertilizer would be required to get the plant’s growth started, after which it can survive without needing any more fertilizer. 

When fertilizing, ensure you make use of an all-purpose fertilizer with slow release. Do make sure that you spray the fertilizer on the soil and away from the diablo plant’s bark or trunk and be generous when spreading the fertilizer on the plant’s base.  

Propagating the Ninebark Diablo Shrub

Propagating is done by stem cuttings, however, you have to be careful when doing this so as not to damage the stem cuttings. 

A great time to propagate your Ninebark Diablo would be in the spring season when they are most dormant. 

Pruning the Ninebark Diablo Shrub  

The Ninebark Plant does not require a lot of pruning, In fact, it is most advised to let the shrub grow into its natural, elegant shape. 

Pruning the Ninebark Diablo Shrub  
Green Thumbs Garden

However, pruning would be required to remove dead leaves and keep the plant looking rich and healthy. In this case, ensure you sterilize all pruning tools used before using them. 

Pruning should be done at the start of spring as that is when the shrub is most dormant. 


No approved, official information has been given as to whether the Ninebark diablo is a toxic plant or not. However if you do find that a child or pet has eaten from the Diablo Ninebark shrub, do endeavor to call a health professional as soon as possible. 

Common Health Problems of the Diablo Ninebark 

The Diablo Ninebark is known to be a great resistant plant to many diseases and insects out there. However there are a few pests that trouble the plant, here they are;

  • Aphids
  • Fire Blight
  • Leaf Spots
  • Powdery Mildew

Frequently Asked Questions

Can ninebark grow in the shade?

The Diablo Ninebark is a great plant that could grow in both bright and shaded areas.

How tall does Diablo ninebark get?

A full grown Diablo Ninebark plant can grow as tall as 8 feet tall.

How far apart should ninebark be planted? 

When planting numerous Ninebark plants, it is advised to keep them 4 to 6 feet apart.

What is the smallest ninebark?

The smallest Ninebark is a cultiver called the ‘Little Devil’.

Will ninebark grow in clay soil?

The Ninebark can tolerate many soil types, the clay soil inclusive.