There are many varieties of Loropetalum, each having its own unique characteristics and each offering different uses in the landscape. Loropetalums show excellent versatility in the landscape. They are attractive when grown in clusters or mixed screens as well as foundation plantings, single specimens, espaliers, groundcovers, and bonsai. They make attractive hedges or, when limbed up, they form very attractive small trees. Below are my personal favorites and, needless to say, the one's our landscape design-build firm uses in almost every plan we draw.
'Purple Diamond' Loropetalum
Combining colorful flowers and foliage with controlled growth, Purple Diamond® is a gem. Unlike some other loropetalums that can swallow your house, this one grows 4 to 5 feet tall with an equal spread. Showy pink flowers appear in spring and sometimes summer. The deep, rich purple foliage holds its color all season. Purple Diamond is great for use as a foundation plant, low hedge, or in groups planted in landscape plants and beds. It is a very low maintenance shrub however can be trimmed or sheared to create formal shapes and hedges.
'Purple Pixie' Loropetalum
With its dwarf size and weeping habit, Purple Pixie® is just the loropetalum we’ve been waiting for. It's a low, mounding and spreading loropetalum grows only 1 to 2 feet tall by 4 to 5 feet wide. Its size makes Purple Pixie a great choice for a ground cover or low border, but it can also add vibrant color to hanging baskets, window boxes, and other containers. The showy pink flowers combined with rich year round purple foliage are truly outstanding. Purple Pixie requires little pruning and is an exceptionally low-maintenance plant.
'Ever Red Sunset' Loropetalum
'Ever Red Sunset' is the first loropetalum to produce true-red flowers...and lots of them! The vivid fringe-flowers are produced in abundance during late winter and spring, sporadically during summer, and again in late fall, contrasting wonderfully with the deepest burgundy foliage of any loropetalum. It's compact size (6' h x 6' w) makes it useful as a hedge, accent, in small groups, in mass plantings, or as a small tree- or shrub-form specimen in landscape beds and foundation plantings.
'Emerald Snow' Loropetalum
One of the most recent introductions, Emerald Snow get its name from the intense lime-green new growth that develops into thick, glossy-green foliage that shows off the masses of pure white fringe-flowers in spring, occasionally in summer, and again in fall. This compact cultivar grows 3-4' tall with an equal spread and is a great choice for foundation plantings, mixed in shrub borders, or in low formal or natural hedges. Emerald Snow is an exceptionally low-maintenance plant that requires little if any pruning however can be sheared or trimmed into more formal shapes and hedges.
'Plum Delight' Loropetalum
Growing to about 6-8' in height with slightly less of a spread, Plum Delight is an excellent choice on the corners, in insets, and between windows in foundation plantings. It also is useful to create mid-size natural or formal hedge, or can limbed up to form a small tree. The deep burgundy-purple foliage contrasts beautifully with the striking, hot-pink fringe flowers in early spring.
As one of of not the tallest growers among the loropetalums, ZhuZhou is a perfect choice for privacy screens, large hedges or a mid-size tree. Growing up 12 feet or more in height, ZhuZhou fills in quickly and provides you with attractive burgundy-purple foliage all year long. Deep colored, elongated, arrow-shaped leaves offer a stark and wonderful backdrop to the masses of pink fringe-flowers produced in spring and occasionally during summer and fall. Prune only for shape or to remove lower branches if a tree form is desired. This is the best loropetalum for use as a single- or multi-trunk tree.
Planting, maintenance and care tips for loropetalums on the next page