With their ability to retain their foliage all year long, including winter, evergreen shrubs and bushes are a garden staple for year-round color. Oftentimes, evergreen shrubs are tolerant of a wide range of soil conditions, creating a versatile shrub. Grown in dozens of varieties, each evergreen shrub has a distinct growing environment, shape, size and color that help create a showy garden landscape.
Wintergreen barberry (Berberis julianae) is an evergreen shrub with a slow growth rate and medium-to-fine texture. The rounded, dense form is ideal planted as a hedge screen among the garden. Growing 4 to 6 feet tall, wintergreen barberry shrubs have dark green leaves that range from 2 to 3 inches long. The lustrous leaves cast a wine color every fall for a vibrant garden display. Wintergreen barberry trees have small flowers that emerge every spring to light up the bush. They require full sun to partial shade and tolerate a wide range of soil varieties. The USDA hardiness zone for planting is 6 to 8.
Leatherleaf viburnum (Viburnum rhytidophyllum) is an evergreen shrub with a moderate growth rate and course texture. Growing 10 to 15 feet tall and wide, leatherleaf viburnum shrubs have an upright growth habit that is ideal along a garden wall or backyard patio for screening. The shiny dark green leaves on leatherleaf viburnum grow 8 inches long with a deep vein running through the oval-shaped leaf. In spring, leatherleaf viburnum blooms with fragrant, white, cluster-like flowers. A bird attractant, leatherleaf viburnum requires full sun to partial shade and rich, moist soils that are overly acidic. The zone for planting is 6 to 9.
Green Mountain Boxwood
Green mountain boxwood (Buxus sempervirens 'Green Mountain') is an evergreen shrub with a slow growth rate and medium-to-fine texture. Growing 3 to 6 feet tall and 1 to 3 feet wide, green mountain boxwood has a clumping growth habit and pyramidal shade, ideal for a hedgerow or garden topiary. Deer and cold-tolerant, the dark green leaves on the green mountain boxwood shrubs are upright, oval-shaped and grow up to 1 inch long. Green mountain boxwood shrubs have small, yellow, spring-blooming flowers that last through the season and provide a sweet scent to the garden. Wind-tolerant, green mountain boxwood requires full sun to partial shade and well-drained, moist soil. The zone for planting is 6 to 8.