Shrubs 61 Ideabooks

Trends in plants come and go, but if there's one that seems to have settled into the modern gardening mainstream, it's shrubs with purple foliage. I, for one, am glad. There was a time when (gasp!) I wasn't wild about plants with colorful foliage, but purple plants were my gateway, and for that, they continue to be some...
Great Design Plant: Texas Ranger Explodes With Color
Residents in the Southwest who are fortunate enough to have Texas ranger (Leucophyllum frutescens) growing in their gardens are familiar with the eager anticipation of the year’s first flush of purple that covers this attractive yet tough...
Great Design Plant: Northern Bush Honeysuckle, a Bronze Beauty
What first attracted me to this gently mounding shrub at the nursery was the distinctive bronze foliage that glowed in the sun. The fragrant tubular yellow blooms came as an unexpected bonus, as did the discovery that deer do minimal damage to it —...
Great Design Plant: Feed Wildlife With Flowering Currant
Long admired in the British Isles for their chubby racemes of bright flowers appearing in late winter to early spring, flowering currants (Ribes sanguineum) are now gaining the appreciation they deserve in West Coast gardens. Flowering...
Great Design Plant: California Buckwheat Pleases Pollinators
Of all the plants you could put in a native garden, buckwheat is a must. There are many species of buckwheat available. In the California garden, clusters of pink to cream flowers of California buckwheat are a huge hit with many pollinators,...
Great Design Plant: Desert Ruellia Brings Beauty to Dry Gardens
Finding a plant that can handle hot, dry conditions without needing a lot of water is a common goal for homeowners who live in the dry Southwest. When you pass by one that is also beautiful, it is time to take a second look and consider adding it to...
Boxwood Alternatives Bring the Chelsea Flower Show to You
With the end of May approaching, I’m looking forward to the Chelsea Flower Show, the highlight of the British gardening year, where top garden designers will once again wow us...
Great Design Plant: Axminster Gold Comfrey for Sun or Shade
There aren’t many plants that have good looks in both sun and shade, so when I discovered this boldly variegated perennial, I was excited to experiment with it in my garden. At first glance it could be mistaken for a hosta, but its coarse, somewhat...
7 New Plants to Grow for Beautiful Foliage
A garden based on flowers may be beautiful for short periods of time, but it is the foliage that holds a garden design together by spanning the seasons. Trees, shrubs and perennials all play an important role in forming the picture frames that enhance...
Touches of Grandness for the Garden
There’s more to landscaping than lawns and foundation plantings. Get inspired by formal garden traditions and incorporate a neatly trimmed hedge, striking symmetrical garden or whimsical topiary into your yard design. Here are...
Great Design Plant: Little Heath Andromeda Brings 4-Season Color
I always look for interesting foliage when selecting shrubs for the landscape or a container, and Little Heath andromeda is a reliable favorite. The small green and white variegated leaves form a tidy mound, unlike some of its larger cousins that can...
Great Design Plant: Baja Fairy Duster, a Scarlet Stunner
Whether you call the uniquely shaped flowers of this shrub fairy dusters or puff balls, they are sure to add beauty to a Southwestern landscape. Baja fairy duster’s dark green, lacy foliage provides a great backdrop to the vibrant red flowers, which...
Great Design Plant: Try Blue Bells for Blooms in Dry Soil
Imagine what characteristics you would want in the perfect shrub. How about one that blooms throughout the year, loves hot temperatures but can handle cooler ones, all while needing no pruning? Would you add one to your landscape? Well, imagine no longer,...
Great Design Plant: Feathery Cassia for Fragrance in Arid Gardens
In the midst of winter, when flowers are scarce, feathery cassia becomes a focal point in the Southwestern landscape. Masses of fragrant yellow flowers cover this Australian native, which thrives in arid climates. The gray-green foliage has a...
Great Design Plant: Sea Grape, a Hardy Coastal Delight
The bright green mouse-ear leaves of the native sea grape tree make me smile. It isn’t just because sea grapes are drought tolerant and salt tolerant — or even because they help stabilize dunes. It’s the plant’s bubbly appearance and happy-go-lucky...
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