Flowering Shrubs & Bushes

Whether you are looking for brilliant colors, tantalizing fragrances or a little of both, flowering shrubs are the perfect choice for home gardens. These versatile shrubs fit in well as borders, backdrops or specimen plantings. Flowering shrubs are also relatively easy to care for, requiring adequate light, regular watering and careful pruning to maintain their beauty.


Azalea flowers display great color in a small package with vibrant shades of white, pink, red, yellow and orange. Azaleas thrive in full sun to partial shade with an extended bloom period from early spring to midsummer. Depending on the variety, azaleas grow anywhere from 1 to 15 feet in height. Azaleas are best grown in USDA hardiness zones 6 to 8.


With its brilliant yellow flowers, forsythia is a welcome harbinger of spring. Forsythia blooms in a period from early to mid-spring and needs full sun in order to thrive. Keep the older branches pruned back in order to encourage new shoots for the following season. Forsythias are best grown in zones 3 to 8.


Hydrangeas are low-maintenance shrubs that provide breathtaking blooms for little time investment. Hydrangeas do well in partial shade and produce large clusters of flowers in shades of blue, pink or white. They will display a continuous show of flowers throughout the summer. Leave plenty of room in the garden as some varieties can reach 22 feet in height and 8 feet across. Hydrangeas are best grown in zones 4 to 9.


Lilac's growth rate is slower than most other flowering shrubs, taking up to 5 years to sprout the first flowers. The results are worth the wait when you catch the first hint of its distinctive fragrance upon the spring breeze. Lilacs prefer full sun and produce clusters of tubular blooms in shades of lavender, pink, magenta and blue. They can become quite tall, ranging in height from 4 to 30 feet, depending on the variety. Lilacs are best grown in zones 3 to 8.

Rose of Sharon

Round out your garden by planting rose of Sharon shrubs, which are traditional late bloomers, and enjoy an extended show of color into mid-autumn. Plant rose of Sharon in moist, well-drained soil located in full or partial sunlight. The flowers are single blossoms in white, pink or purple, and the shrub itself will grow 10 to 12 feet high and 6 to 8 feet wide. Rose of Sharon is best grown in zones 5 to 9.


The viburnum shrub is versatile and easy to grow. With its glossy dark green foliage, beautiful flowers, and colorful fruit viburnum will provide a focal point in your garden all year long. Viburnum will tolerate full sun to partial shade and needs ample, weekly watering. The height will vary depending on the variety, from 4 to 30 feet. Viburnum is best grown in zones 3 to 9.

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About this Author

Vikki McMahon attended the College of New Jersey before experiencing a variety of career choices, including the pharmaceutical research field, the real estate industry, and the Insurance industry. She has been a freelance writer for 3 years and shares her enthusiasm for parenting and home and garden topics, with published articles appearing on stressfreeliving.com and thebabybin.com.