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Nandina

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Nandina’s other name is heavenly bamboo. Although it’s not a true bamboo, nandina’s leaves and straight, unbranched stems are reminiscent of bamboo. As for the other part of the name, nandina has some heavenly attributes: white flowers in summer; red or white berries in fall, persisting into winter; and pretty winter coloration.

Closeup images of nandina bushes including flowers, foliage and fruit.

Nandina is a Southern favorite that can be grown in Zones 6–10 or overwintered indoors in colder climates. Although the species grows 5–6 feet tall, some cultivars are as short as 18 inches, meaning nandina can find a home not only in space-challenged gardens but also in container plantings.

Depending on cultivar, foliage opens up pinkish red or lime green in spring, maturing to green in summer and then taking on reddish hues in fall and winter. Because it has multiseason interest from foliage, flowers and berries, nandina makes a fine specimen plant. It also works well when massed into a hedge or screen.

‘Compacta’ (4 feet) and ‘Nana’ (2 feet) are shorter cultivars suited to small gardens or mixed flowerbeds. ‘Alba’ features white berries. ‘Firepower’ boasts bright red foliage in winter.

berry-laden nandina bush in landscape.

Plant Type: Shrub

Zones: 6–9

Height: 2–6 ft

Width: 2–6 ft

Light Expsosure: Full Sun, Partial Sun

Bloom Color: White

Bloom Time: Early Summer, Mid Summer

Foliage Color: Green, Chartreuse, Pink/Red

Special Features: Attracts Birds, Attracts Butterflies, Drought Tolerant, Winter Interest

Uses: Container Plant, Screen/Privacy, Hedge, Specimen

Growing Nandina

Plant nandina in fertile, moist, well-drained soil in full sun or part shade. Some protection from wind is helpful. Keep the plant well watered the first few years until it has become established. After that, it’s more tolerant of dry soils. To spur new juvenile growth, cut back two or three of the oldest stems each year in late winter or early spring.