Denomination: 'Seward'
Trade name: Summer Wine
Botanical Name: Physocarpus opulifolius
Applicant/Holder: Spring Meadow Nursery, Inc.
12601 120th Avenue
Grand Haven, Michigan
United States of America
Breeder: Dale G. Deppe, Spring Meadow Nursery, Inc., Grand Haven, United States of America
Agent in Canada: BioFlora Inc.
38723 Fingal Line
R.R. #1
St. Thomas, Ontario
N5P 3S5
Tel: 519-631-6241
Application Date: 2003-07-25
Application Number: 03-3785
Grant of Rights Date: 2006-11-28
Certificate Number: 2641
Grant of Rights Termination Date: 2024-11-28

Variety Description

Variety used for comparison: 'Monlo' (Diablo)

Summary: 'Seward' has a bushier growth habit and a wider plant width than 'Monlo'. 'Seward' has a higher degree of branching than 'Monlo'. The leaves of 'Seward' are narrower and have a higher degree of folding when newly opened than the leaves of 'Monlo'. 'Seward' has medium anthocyanin colouration on the lower side of newly opened leaves while 'Monlo' has weak anthocyanin. 'Seward' has a longer pedicel length than 'Monlo'.


'Seward' has an upright-bushy growth habit with a high to very high degree of branching and medium to dense foliage. The stem is ribbed and red-brown in colour.

The leaves are alternate in arrangement and simple. The leaf blade is ovate in shape with an acute apex and cuneate to rounded base. The leaf blade margin is biserrate with medium to strong lobing present. The margin incisions are shallow in depth. Newly opened leaves have a strong degree of folding. The upper side of the leaf blade has weak glossiness. Newly opened leaves are dark brown in colour with tones of brown purple on the upper side while the lower side is dark brown with grey brown and red tones. There is medium anthocyanin on the lower side of newly opened leaves. The colour on the upper side of mature leaves is dark brown red and the lower side is brown green with red tones.

'Seward' has a corymb type inflorescence and a rotate shaped flower. The corolla is white in colour.

Origin & Breeding History: 'Seward' originated from a cross made in June 2000 at Spring Meadow Nursery in Grand Haven, Michigan, USA. The female parent was the variety 'Nanus' and the male parent was the variety 'Monlo'. 'Seward' was selected in September 2000 based on its leaf and branching characteristics. The variety was first propagated by softwood cuttings in September 2000.

Tests & Trials: 'Seward' was tested in an outdoor container trial during the summers of 2004 and 2005, in St. Thomas, Ontario. The trial included 15 plants of each variety. All shrubs were grown from five inch liners and planted into 2 gallon containers in May 2004, then transplanted into 3 gallon containers on July 2, 2004. Plants were arranged in rows with approximately 1 metre spacing between plants. Observations and measurements were taken from 10 plants of each variety on June 14, 2005. All colour measurements were made using the 2001 RHS colour chart.

Comparison tables for 'Seward' with reference variety 'Monlo'

Plant width (cm)

  'Seward' 'Monlo'
mean 78.4 66.2
std. deviation 13.53 5.47

Leaf width (cm)

  'Seward' 'Monlo'
mean 4.3 5.5
std. deviation 0.58 0.60

Pedicel length (cm)

  'Seward' 'Monlo'
mean 2.0 1.5
std. deviation 0.19 0.13

Click on image for larger view
Ninebark: 'Seward' (left) with reference variety 'Monlo' (right)

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