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Evergreen and Flowering Buying Guide

Shrubs -- both evergreen and flowering shrub varieties -- are remarkably diverse and necessary elements in a landscape, providing everything from focal points to natural fences to windbreaks. Here's a guide to what you need to know to purchase your own shrubs.

Types of Shrubs: Evergreen and Flowering

Types of Shrubs: Evergreen and Flowering

Many a garden memory recalls the fragrance of a lilac or the blooms of a rhododendron. Those diverse plants have something in common: Both are shrubs. These adaptable plants -- found in evergreen and flowering varieties -- come in hundreds of different types, styles, and sizes. They are a great starting point for a new landscape and a welcome visual diversion for an established garden. Here are a few of the main types of shrubs: hydrangea, dogwood, forsythia, rhododendron and azalea, spirea, lilac, arborvitae, boxwood, butterfly bush, and miscellaneous types.


One of the most beloved shrubs, hydrangea generally loves shade and has varieties that bloom from summer through fall. There are also compact hydrangeas as well as those that offer distinctive blooms in unusual colors such as blue.

shop Hydrangea
Creative Displays
at Amazon

Rich Tones of Red and Gold Hydrangeas in a Plaid Decoupage Glass Vessel. Hand Assembled in the United States.

Creative Displays
at Amazon

Sunflowers and green Hydrangeas create a nice bouquet over birch in an acrylic water glass Vase. Hand assembled in the United read more

Creative Displays
at Amazon

Mixed color Hydrangea flowers look freshly cut in acrylic water and glass. Hand assembled in the United States.

Brighter Blooms Nursery

Hydrangea bushes are among the most robust and prolific bloomers found in gardens today, so it???s no surprise that the Vanilla St...rawberry Hydrangea was voted ???Top Plant of 2010??? by the American Nursery and Landscape Association. Known for its color-changin read more


There are tree varieties of dogwood, but the shrub versions offer gardeners distinctive focal-point plants and bright-color branches. In addition, their fruit can be valuable food for birds and animals in wintertime.


Small yellow blooms stand out on forsythia shrubs in springtime. Forsythia loves full sun, and its tooth-shape leaves provide distinctive foliage that turns purple in the fall.

shop Forsythia

Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. Fast growing, deciduous shrub known for it's profusion of golden yellow flowers in early, which completely fills the entire branch with color. Versatile plant for full sun and most any soil. Use as a perimeter hedge, near the foundation, or anywhere that needs a bright splash of sunlit color. Can be pruned as necessary, by cutting to the ground immediately after flowering, or by removing the oldest stems. Excellent plant to brighten dreary days of late winter. read more


Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. A short, compact, deciduous shrub with a spreading habit and small, bright green leaves that ...change to a bronze purple hue in autumn. Showy, yellow flowers are borne along the branches in spring. Easy to grow, low growing plant for the foundation or as a low hedge. read more

Rhododendron and Azalea

Both rhododendron and azalea are woody, springtime-flowering shrubs that love moisture and shade; rhododendron has large, tough-looking leaves that stay on the shrubs through wintertime.


The most distinguishing characteristic of the spirea is its lovely cascading branches, but the shrub also supplies either white or pink spring flowers. Many have traditional green foliage, while other varieties sport lighter shades of green or gold-tone leaves.


Old-fashioned and beloved, lilac provides unmistakable fragrance in late spring. Traditional varieties -- which can get leggy if not pruned well -- are still available, but newer dwarf versions offer a more compact growing pattern.


A lover of sunny locations, arborvitae is a dense evergreen shrub that works well as a solid border in a yard. Arborvitae lends itself to shaping, and dwarf varieties can be used as focal points in garden beds.


Boxwood naturally lends itself to sculpting, but it can also be left to grow as a small, clumping shrub. The deep-tone, evergreen leaves of boxwood work well as a border, such as along a sidewalk, for example.

shop Boxwood

Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. Buxus 'Green Velvet' is a hardy Boxwood developed in Ontario, Canada. This hybrid combines th...e hardiness and compact growth habit of Korean Boxwood with the luxuriant, deep green leaf color of English Boxwood. Best of all, 'Green Velvet' retains it's deep, velvety green foliage color clear through the most difficult winters. it's lovely, full-bodied habit, very low and rounded, and dense, shears and shapes beautifully to any desired form -- from topiary to an excellent, crisp low hedge. read more


Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. An evergreen shrub with small, dark green leaves and a pyramidal habit. Needing no more than ...a quick trimming each year, this plant can be used as a specimen, as an accent, in the shrub border, and next to the foundation. Every landscape should have this handsome shrub. read more

Laura Ashley

This preserved boxwood topiary will instantly liven up your home or office decor.. No need to shop for a planter separately comes ...complete with decorative planter. Comes with a Spritzer; all you have to do is spray it once a month.. All Natural Preserved Boxwood Leaves.. 16 in. L x 16 in. W x 57.5 in. H (12 lbs.) read more

Butterfly Bush

Arching and fragrant, the beautiful blooms and branches of butterfly bush are attractive to both butterflies and hummingbirds. In warmer climates the shrub can tower over the garden, but in colder locales it will die down in winter.


Countless other evergreen and flowering shrubs are available, from crape myrtle to hibiscus. Each one has specific hardiness zone limitations and will grow differently based on your soil and microclimate.

Product Features

Product Features

There are countless factors that go into any landscape choice -- which often makes it overwhelming for homeowners to decide on what's best. To get started with shrubs, boil down plants based on a few product features, then apply personal preferences. For example, a row of boxwoods in front of a house can be contained, but a row of arborvitaes will soon block windows and doors. So mature height and width is an important product feature. Others to review include container versus bare root, foliage, and flowers. Here's a guide to get started.

Mature Height and Width

Shrubs that are tiny, tidy, gallon-container plants at the nursery may, after a decade of growth, be towering specimens that block your front window. Make sure you understand the growth potential of the shrub as it relates to your landscape.

Container vs. Bare Root

Shrubs may be container-grown or bare-root, which means the roots are free of any soil. Bare-root shrubs may be planted earlier than container-grown versions.

Foliage and Flowers

Shrubs differ in foliage type and flowers. Some are green year-round, while others reward with a burst of springtime blooms. Which you choose depends on your landscape needs and preferences.

Purchase Considerations

Purchase Considerations

We've all done it: purchased a plant for the landscape that pushed the limits of climate, soil, and convenience. The result is typically an unhappy plant -- and an unhappy homeowner. Particularly when it comes to shrubs, which are often more expensive but reward with longer life, it's important to take into account purchase considerations that will affect the plant and your time in the landscape. Carefully review water requirements, soil preference, and hardiness zone as you narrow down your options. Here's a short overview to get you started.

Water Requirements

To become established, all shrubs need adequate water in their first few years. Even when they're a few years old, though, shrubs will need water, particularly in times of drought. Know your shrubs' requirements before making a selection.

Soil Preference

Shrubs differ in the soil -- acidic, alkaline, clay, sandy, loam, or a combination -- that they prefer. Know the composition of your soil and what amendments your shrubs may require to do their best.

Hardiness Zone

Shrubs are an investment for your landscape, and you'll be disappointed if your shrubs don't survive because of incorrect USDA hardiness Zone. Know your climate, and choose shrubs that can survive.

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No Brand
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at Boscov's

No one will know that this plant isn't real. This Arborvitae Tree with green round plastic pot measures 36 including the pot. For ...indoor or outdoor display. No need for dirt, water or sunlight. Pruning never required. Resistant to animals and insects. When ordering multiples of this item, additional shipping fees may be charged. Before levying such charge, we will contact you with the proposed amount of the charge. If you do not want to accept the surcharge, we will cancel your order without any penalty to you. read more

Arborvitae Tree - 36'
David Shaw Silverware
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at Sears

Make your holiday d??cor dance with this festive Amaryllis Candelabrum. It s beautiful, with full, lush reds that rest softly on a... bed of pine sprigs and berries. It also stands a stately 15 x 17 , so it s not shy about announcing that yes; it s indeed time for the holidays. Completing the picture is the metal stand with red candelabrum. Makes an ideal gift for that hard-to-buy-for person. read more

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David Shaw Silverware
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at Sears

This large (24") Amaryllis wreath is bright, cheery, and full of holiday spirit.

24 Amaryllis Wreath Multi
David Shaw Silverware
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at Sears

This beautiful Bulb Areca has a thick trunk giving way to cascading fronds

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David Shaw Silverware
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at Sears

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Healthy Ponds
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at NorthernTool

The Healthy Ponds Lily Pad Dispenser and Water Treatment Product provides a patented time-release system that dispenses metered da...ily doses of bacteria and enzymes, reducing algal blooms and sludge in ponds up to 2500 gallons. U.S.A. Treatment Period Treats up to 30 days, Treatment Capacity gal. 2,500, Includes qty. 2 Packs, Material Type Plastic holder w/bacteria, enzyme pack, Compatible With Small ponds, Environmentally Friendly Yes. Safe for humans, pets, fish and plants Contains a 2-month supply of water treatment product Model Number: 10031. Size: Small. Age Group: Adult. read more

Healthy Ponds Lily Pad Dispenser and Water Treatment Product - 4 Inch, Model 10031
Brussel's Bonsai
$50.65 $83.00
at Walmart

Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. The Brussel's Bonsai Crepe Myrtle is a miniature Chickasaw crepe myrtle flowering bonsai that... blooms prolifically in mid-summer. The branch tips are covered with electric fuchsia blossoms for weeks, making this bonsai perfect for sites needing visual reviving. This tiny tree is covered with dainty, perfectly proportioned leaves and was developed by the National Arboretum. read more

Bonsai Plants, Bulbs & Seeds Crepe Myrtle DT-6006DCM
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at Walmart

The As Seen on TV Chia Herb Garden is designed to provide you with everything you need to grow garden fresh herbs in your own home.... Features of the Chia Garden include three terra cotta pots, three matching saucers, six seed packets, six plant markers and three exclusive Chia growing sponges. Simply place a sponge in one of the quality Gourmet Chia pots, sprinkle seeds on top and water daily. You can grow fresh dill, sweet basil, curled parsley, chives, cilantro and sweet marjoram in your Chia Garden. The As Seen on TV Chia Herb Garden will provide you with fresh herbs year round and comes with planting and care instructions. It is easy to care for and fun to watch grow. The gourmet Chia will make an ideal gift for anyone who loves to cook with fresh herbs. read more

As Seen on TV Chia Herb Garden
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at Home Depot

Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. bloomsz Perennial Garden Bulb Collection contains Dahlias and Agastache, varieties that love ...full sun and thrive in the heat of summer. Bright red, cactus-type Dahlias produce large flowers with pointed petals. Floriferous lower growing Dahlias have flowers over 1 in. in diameter that attract butterflies and bees. Agastache produces a mass of soft, fragrant powder-blue flower spikes that are excellent in cut-flower arrangements and dry beautifully. read more

Bloomsz Plants, Bulbs & Seeds Perennial Garden Bulbs Collection (6-Pack) 00433
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at Home Depot

Shop for Outdoors at The Home Depot. Lovers of Gladiolus know that they make excellent cut flowers. Tall and stately, our Bloomsz ...Gladiolus Gemstones of the Garden Bulb Blend features some of the largest flowers in true gemstone shades. The lime green of peridot, the opalescent white of freshly fallen snow and the bluish-purple of amethyst delight the eye both outdoors and inside the home. Grow these beauties in your cutting garden or add them to the back of borders and beds where they??????ll sparkle like precious gems in the sunlight. read more

Bloomsz Plants, Bulbs & Seeds Gladiolus Gemstones of the Garden Bulbs Blend (25-Pack) 00421

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