Whether a gardener is trying to add color to an otherwise bland-looking area of the garden, create a flower garden or grow a flowering hedge, there is a wide variety of choices in flowering shrubs. Choices range from evergreen, deciduous, those that bloom at a specific time of year and those that bloom year-round. Gardeners can add color through shrubs both by using them in containers and by planting them directly in the ground.
Sweet acacia (Acacia farnesiana) is a native to North America and grows well in USDA planting zones 9 through 11. A perennial evergreen producing yellow flowers year-round, sweet acacia blooms heaviest throughout springtime. Gardeners should use caution when performing maintenance and selecting a planting site, as the shrub is thorny. Sweet acacia is suitable for use in butterfly and native gardens, as insects use the plant for nectar and birds use the dense coverage for nests.
Plants grow at a medium-slow rate of speed, reaching 10 to 25 feet in height with a spread of 15 to 25 feet at maturity. Sweet acacia is adapted to growing in a wide variety of well-draining soil mediums and has a high drought tolerance once established in the landscape. Plants will tolerate brief periods of saturation. It grows best when situated in full sun and has a medium tolerance to salt spray.
Peregrina (Jatropha integerrima), also called jatropha, is a perennial, evergreen shrub that grows best in USDA planting zones 9 through 11. It is frost-sensitive. Peregrina is trainable through pruning to be a small tree. Gardeners should use caution when handling peregrina, as all parts of the plant are poisonous. Clusters of tiny, scarlet flowers bloom year-round. Peregrina is suitable for butterfly gardens, as it attracts both butterflies and hummingbirds. Gardeners can utilize the plant in large containers, as a specimen or as a hedging plant.
Plants prefer growing in full to partial sun conditions. Peregrina grows at a medium rate of speed, reaching 15 feet in height at maturity and a spread of 10 feet. It has a high drought tolerance, looking best when given weekly watering. Plants are well adapted to growing in a wide range of soils that drain, and it has a low tolerance to salt spray.
Firecracker plant (Russelia sarmentosa) is a smallish, evergreen, perennial shrub that grows best in USDA planting zones 8 through 11. It is suitable for use inside containers, butterfly gardens or where a low-growing, flowering shrub is required. The plant produces masses of small, tubular, red flowers summer throughout fall, which attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
Plants grow best in full to partial sun, preferring sandy to loam, well-draining soil mediums. Firecracker plant is a fast grower, obtaining a mature height of 3 to 4 feet and a spread of 2 to 4 feet. It has a moderate tolerance to both salt and drought and flowers and looks best given regular, weekly watering.