Flowering Shrubs and Bushes to Plant for Garden Color

Flowering shrubs and bushes to give your home curb appeal. Dwarf evergreen shrubs for shade. Landscaping with shrubs. Landscape roses. Deer resistant barberry. Viburnum, dogwood, mock orange, Abelia...

This is the impact that flowering bushes can have on a landscape.

For a low maintenance landscape:

 Use as many shrubs as the space will permit. 

Fill the gaps between the bushes with your favorite perennials, and use annual plants just to provide color during the first summer while the more permanent plants are still settling in.

A gorgeous yard, filled with bloom, is an asset to any home; and flowering shrubs play a key role in creating a landscape that looks good all year.

Mixed plantings, where trees, bushes, perennial plants, and annuals mingle, are the best option for most landscapes. 

Always install the largest, most permanent plants first.

First, the trees go in.  Next, decide how many shrubs you will need.

This is one of those situations where less is definitely not more. 

Shrubs are generally easier to care for than perennials.  They also stick around and provide structure after the annual and perennial plants have bid the garden adieu for the season.


Top Flowering Garden Shrubs and Plants

Dogwood - Yellow Twig
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Rosy Glow Barberry Shrub
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Dogwood - Red Twigged
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

The epitome of versatility, flowering shrubs and bushes can be used either as accent or anchor plants in a perennial garden, or they can be stuffed into the landscape, cheek-by-jowl, to create a shrub garden of profuse bloom, fragrance, and texture.

I've listed a few of the most garden-worthy flowering shrubs and bushes available on this page.  These are plants which bloom generously over a long season.

Of course, there are many more of these blooming beauties than space would permit me to list here, so I've divided the plants by color and use. 

The bright blue heading for each section is a clickable link to an entire page of flowering bushes that fit that description.


Deer Resistant Shrubs

Mock Orange - Buckleys Quill
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Hydrangea - Annabelle
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Viburnum - Common Snowball Bush
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

If you live where deer like to forage, your garden plan must consist of flowering shrubs and bushes that deer do not want to taste. 

While there is no way to guarantee that these adorable marauders won't dine in your yard, (famished deer will sometimes eat plants they don't like) there's no need to grow them a buffet of all their favorite foods.

The headline above links to a list of shrubs deer wish you would not plant.  They either taste or smell awful to a deer or they just feel miserable on its tongue.


Shade Loving Shrubs

Abelia - Bronze Anniversary
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Sugartina Summersweet
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Euonymus - Vegetus
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Abelia 'Bronze Anniversary' is deer resistant.

Use the fragrant, white flower spikes of Sugartina Summersweet to enliven any planting in full sun to part shade.  Its compact growth  and dwarf size will allow you lots of latitude in siting it.  If this is not enough to recommend it, its yellow fall color will surely close the deal.


Pink Flowering Shrubs and Bushes

Butterfly Bush - Pink Delight
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Pink Flowering Almond
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Hydrangea - Cityline Vienna
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

For late season color, the sweetly scented flowers of the Pink Delight Butterfly Bush can't be beat.  This six foot beauty blooms in flushes from June until frost.

Hydrangea macrophylla Cityline Vienna is a compact-growing dwarf perfect for planting in pots or small space gardens.  The huge flower clusters appear during the warm months and are held upright by the sturdy stems this cultivar is known for. Recommended for zones 5-9.

The Pink Almond is another dwarf flowering shrub you are sure to love! Maturing to just four feet tall and wide, it may be grown on nearly any soil in zones 4-7.

This slow-growing spring bloomer gives an encore performance each fall when its leaves turn gold.


Rose Shrubs

Rose - Easy Elegance® Kiss Me - Shrub
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Rose - Easy Elegance® Macy's Pride - Shrub
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Rose - Bonica® - Shrub
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

These are landscape roses that will give an exceptional garden performance while requiring very little effort from you. 

The award winning 'Macy's Pride' was not selected to represent the retail giant for nothing.  Pale yellow roses fading to pink-kissed white arrive in wave after wave throughout the growing season.  Bred for disease resistance and cold hardiness, Macy's Pride is sure to take pride of place in your yard.

The shapely 'Kiss Me' will seduce you with loads of heavily scented, old-fashioned pink roses. One whiff and you will want to kiss me for introducing you to this garden charmer.


Shrub Trees

Rose of Sharon Tree - Lavender Chiffon
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Blushing Knock Out® Rose Tree
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Pink Double Knock Out® Rose Tree
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Evergreen Flowering Shrubs and Bushes

Privet - Golden Vicary
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Frost Proof Gardenia
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Rhododendron - P.J.M.
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Evergreens are best used to provide the structural framework of the garden as their year-round contribution of color is so valuable.  That said, they need not be used exclusively.

Juxtaposing them against the open skeletons of deciduous species makes for a more varied planting and also allows for more excitement when the deciduous plants bloom.

Evergreen flowering shrubs really shine in small gardens where each plant must contribute something to the scheme all year.

Shade loving Gardenias are especially suited to planting in small spaces--or even containers--as they are slow growing and compact.


Early Spring Flowering Shrubs and Bushes

Spirea - Bridalwreath
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Ninebark - Amber Jubilee
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Forsythia - Show Off
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Spring flowering shrubs and bushes give us that first burst of color and scent that we all long for after a cold, dark winter. 

The upright branches of Forsythia 'Show Off' blanket themselves in bloom each spring.  This is a 3' dwarf with a 6' spread that features larger flowers and darker leaves than the older varieties.

Amber Jubilee Ninebark kicks off its year-long color show with a burst of fuzzy white spring blossoms.  Once these flowers fade, the orange, yellow, and green summer foliage keeps up the color show.

  In fall, the leaf color deepens to dark red before they drop to reveal the six foot shrub's exfoliating bark!

Plant at least one of these early bloomers so you won't have to wait a day longer than necessary to get your floral fix.


Yellow Flowering Shrubs and Bushes

Primrose Lilac
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

St Johnswort - Sunny Boulevard
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Potentilla - Goldstar
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

The creamy yellow flowers of 'Primrose' Lilacs represent a new and exciting development in the world of Syringa vulgaris.  In the shrubs early years, the blooms will be more cream than yellow.  Do not let this shake your faith in this remarkable bush, the flower color intensifies as the plant ages.

From July to September Hypericum 'Sunny Boulevard' produces masses of cheerful flowers that resemble little daffodils.  Its deer resistance is an added bonus.

Potentilla 'Goldstar' is a compact bush that is tough enough to go the distance in your landscape.  The 3' x 4' shrub covers itself with inch-wide blooms repeatedly all summer. 

It will bloom in any soil, no matter how poor.  It can be planted at street side as pollution does not phase it.  Give it any exposure from full sun to light shade and it will reward you with season long color.


Purple Shrubs

Butterfly Bush - Lo & Behold® Blue Chip
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Purpleleaf Sandcherry
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Lilac - Sensation
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Cool purple is a restful color that adds a feeling of tranquility to a planting.  Purple perennials and shrubs are often used to create this effect.

To create a cohesive garden design: Don't plant a single purple shrub.  Instead, install several at regular intervals throughout the planting. 

When in bloom, they will form a purple ribbon that links the design together.


Fast Growing Shrubs for Privacy

Hydrangea - Quick Fire
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Spirea vanhouteii
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Ninebark - Center Glow
from: Nature Hills Nursery, Inc.

Size, vigor, and dense growth is what you want from flowering shrubs and bushes planted for privacy.  They need to grow tall enough that people standing on the ground cannot look over them and bushy enough that they can't easily see through them. 

The early-blooming 'Quick Fire' Hydrangea fills the bill perfectly.  This is a vigorous selection that will achieve a height of 6-8' with an equal spread if left unpruned.

The deep pink flowers appear, nearly four weeks sooner than those of other Hydrangeas, in early summer. The really fantastic thing about this Hydrangea is that its flower color is not at all affected by soil pH.

What you see is what you get no matter where you plant it.



More Beautiful Flowering Shrubs and Bushes:

Rose of Sharon Bush

Knock Out Roses

American Beautyberry

Weigela Shrubs

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