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Comments on these shrubs, please -- updated with pics

last month
last modified: last month

Have a long, narrow (~4 foot) area of perennial bed next to the house off the deck. I've got annuals and perennials in there but it looks really bare in the winter, and I'm not happy with the plant arrangement so I'd like to add a couple shrubs that don't won't get too wide (3-5' height is preferred since the windows are high).

Here a few choices I'm considering and why:

  • "Hummingbird" Clethra. I think the upright shape would look good in this narrow area and I might be able to fit in a couple if planted on the diagonal. I don't remember why, but Clethra didn't do well at my other house. But this is this house, so maybe. How late until these leaf out in the spring?
  • "Honeybee" Diervilla. Yellow shot of foliage might be nice here and add cohesiveness with the rest of the perennial beds, I have chartreuse and yellow accent foliage throughout. Don't really know anything about this plant, though. And if it stays short I won't be happy with it.
  • False spirea (Sobaria) "Cherry on Top". The foliage is gorgeous in pictures and I think would look really good in this area and take the visual interest level up a notch. I've never seen it IRL, though.

What can you tell me about these, good and bad?


Update: Ok, so I exercised a woman's prerogative to change her mind and bought an "Annabelle" hydrangea after thinking on it a while and realizing it needed more cohesiveness with the other side of the path. So, I added an "Annabelle", a couple "Southern Cross" ironweed next to her, and a "Cherry on Top" Sobaria down the pathy by the Siberian Iris. Still not happy with the area in front of that little door, but I can't plant anything that will be in the way if the door needs to removed for access to the ductwork under that part of the house; that's why there's a pot there.



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