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Plants to grow around the air conditioner outside

Our central air unit is on the side of the house that gets full hot sun almost all day. (We live in southern MN- zone 4) I would like to plant something around it to add interest to the side of the house as well and provide shade so that the unit doesn't have to work so hard. Any suggestions?
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

Hi

Well there are a number of shrubs that could probably survive there. My first thought would be spireas. They come in a variety of species with different colored foliage and flowers. They are also tough as nails. Viburnums would also work. They also come in many sizes and shapes and most have attractive fruit that birds love. You can find more options in our Plant Encyclopedia on this website. Do an Advanced Search and you should get a list of plants that will work for you.

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