Deutzia gracilis

Slender Deutzia




  • native to Japan
  • zone 4

Habit and Form

  • small, deciduous shrub
  • broad mounded shape
  • 2' to 4' high with an equal spread
  • slow growth rate
  • fine texture, medium in winter months

Summer Foliage

  • deciduous, simple leaves
  • opposite leaf arrangement
  • lanceolate leaf shape
  • 1" to 3" long and about 0.5' wide
  • leaf base is rounded
  • leaf tip is pointed
  • unequal serrated leaf margins
  • medium green leaf color

Autumn Foliage

  • no fall color


  • pure white flowers
  • small, only about 0.5" in diameter
  • blooms in late May
  • borne in racemes
  • plants become covered in flowers
  • short blooming time, 1 to 2 weeks


  • dry brown capsules
  • not ornamentally important


  • very slender stems
  • older bark tends to exfoliate
  • young bark in yellowish, glabrous
  • linear leaf scar
  • sessile buds, brownish


  • easily transplanted
  • prefers well-drained soil
  • full sun
  • prune after flowering
  • pH adaptable
  • renewal pruning is effective

Landscape Use

  • foundation planting
  • mass or group
  • flowering effect
  • shrub border
  • for texture


  • leaf spot
  • aphids
  • leaf minor
  • can look unkempt and need renewal pruning

ID Features

  • small mounded deciduous shrub
  • opposite leaf arrangement
  • unequal serrated leaf margins
  • white flowers in late May
  • linear leaf scars


  • by softwood cuttings
  • by seed


'Nikko' (perhaps the same as 'Nana') - A popular plant highly promoted in the last decade, 'Nikko' forms a neat, dense low mound or groundcover 2' tall and at least twice as wide. The blooms are abundant and pure white in spring, and the fall foliage can be a good red.

'Variegata' - A form occasionally encountered in specialist nurseries, this plant has leaves that are broadly-margined with white. Other traits are similar to the species. A striking shrub perhaps useful in lightening up small areas.

© Copyright Mark H. Brand, 1997-2015.

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Citation and Acknowledgements: University of Connecticut Plant Database,, Mark H. Brand, Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture, Storrs, CT 06269-4067 USA.