Landscape shrubs come in a wide range of shapes, sizes and types, including evergreen and deciduous shrubs. They help to accent areas of the landscape like a front border, garden wall or when, grown in masses, create a makeshift fence along the garden. Oftentimes the best landscape shrubs are not only drought tolerant but can withstand a wide range of soil types for a long-lasting shrub.
Little Gem Arborvitae
Little gem arborvitae is an evergreen shrub that is suitable to grow in USDA zones 3 to 7a. As an evergreen, little gem arborvitae retains its foliage color throughout the year, including winter, to help bring warmth to the landscape. Little gem arborvitae has a globose or rounded form that is dense and compact. Grown for its attractive foliage, it has a slow growth rate. The glossy, crumpled dark green leaves on little gem are located on the flattened sprays of horizontal branches. Little gem arborvitae grows 1 to 3 feet tall and has a spread of 4 to 6 feet wide, making it ideal as a border shrub along the landscape. It grows best in full sun to light shade and moist, well-drained soil.
Korean barberry is a deciduous shrub with a moderate growth rate. It grows up to 6 feet tall and has a spread of 3 to 5 feet wide. Korean barberry has a haystack to oval shape that is dense and makes for an ideal barrier plant along the landscape. The small, yellow, spring-blooming flowers on Korean barberry grow in clusters and are followed by the waxy, bright red berries that emerge in fall to last into winter. The dark green, 1- to 3-inch-long rounded leaves on Korean barberry are edged with small spines and turn red and purple in fall. Korean barberry shrubs are drought-tolerant to withstand periods of limited moisture, an ideal quality in a landscape shrub. Easy to transplant, they grow best in full sun to part shade and tolerate a wide range of soil varieties. Plant Korean barberry in USDA zones 4 to 7.
Butterfly bush is a rapidly growing deciduous shrub that is suitable in USDA zones 5 to 9. It grows 5 to 10 feet tall and 6 to 8 feet wide and has a large, rounded form with arching branches that hold the bright flowers. The fragrant, small, 4- to 10-inch-wide clusters of flowers or panicles grow in a wide range of colors including, purple, pink, white and yellow. Emerging in summer to last into fall, the flowers create long-lasting color to the landscape. The oval, gray to blue green 4- to 10-inch-long leaves on the butterfly bush emerge in late spring, before the flowers appear. Easy to transplant, butterfly bushes are drought-tolerant, two qualities that make them an ideal landscape shrub. Butterfly bushes grow best in full sun and moist, well-drained soil but tolerate a wide range of soil varieties.