Ornamental Shrubs

Ornamental Shrubs

It is hard to imagine a garden without a shrub or two. They can be used to beautify your garden by emphasizing the entry or hide the areas you do not want to see such as the neighbors backyard. Ornamental shrubs can be divided into evergreen and deciduous, while the some can be also classified as flowering shrubs. There are several things that should be taken into account when choosing ornamental shrubs including their size, height, blooming time and length, etc. It is crucial to make sure that you take into account its mature size as well to prevent a little shrub becoming a big nightmare.

There are countless ornamental shrubs that would probably fit perfectly in your garden but unless you have a large garden you should choose ornamental shrubs very carefully.

Here are only few of many ornamental shrubs that will enhance just about every garden:


Rhododendron is a genus of over 1000 flowering plants in the family Ericaceae which are best known for their beautiful flowers. The genus is native to a major part of Northern Hemisphere but it is also found in Southern Hemisphere. However, only few are native to Europe and North America but some of the most beautiful species tend to grow well in Europe and North America as well. Unlike most other plants, Rhododendron prefers shady area and acidic soil rather than neutral or alkaline. It will grow in sunny area and alkaline soil but it will not produce flowers which are the main reason for most gardeners planting it in the first place. For that reason you should plant it in a shady area and add to the soil some needle leaves of a pine or any other conifer tree to increase acidity without causing any harm to the nearby plants.


Hortensia (Hydrangea) is a genus of about 70 species of flowering shrubs that are native to Asia and Americas. They are highly valued for their rich flowerheads of various colors and shapes that bloom during summer months. Hortensia prefers partially shaded areas and does not require much care except for occasional watering and some fertilization. Both evergreen and deciduous varieties are available. The most popular species is Mophead Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla) producing large round flowerheads.

Rose of Sharon

Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus) is a beautiful shrub of the genus Hibiscus in the family Malvaceae. It is native to Asia but grows well throughout Europe as well. It is very popular among gardeners for its huge flower buds in red, lavender, white, pink and purple colors. A single flower is short-lasting but new ones are produced from July to September. The spectacular shrub which is the national flower of South Korea is extremely easy to grow. It requires virtually no care except for cutting back dried shots in late autumn or early spring.

Common Sage

Common Sage (Salvia officinalis) is one of those shrubs that is perfect for every garden. It is a small shrub with highly attractive evergreen grayish leaves and purple flowers that attract numerous beneficials insects, in first place honey bees and bumblebees. The shrub is native to the Mediterranean region but grows well in many other parts of Europe as well including areas with continental climate. It requires little care but it should be planted in a sunny area and well-drained soil. Common sage is also highly valued for medicinal and culinary uses. For therapeutic purposes, harvest the leaves during blooming period and dry them in a shady area.

Common Box

Common box (Buxus sempervirens) is a genus of approximately 70 slow-growing evergreen shrubs. It is native to many parts of the world including South and Central Americas, Africa and Asia but only European and few Asian species are resistant to frost. It prefers partially shaded areas. It grows very slowly and needs to be pruned once a year only which make it ideal for hedges.


Camellia is a genus of evergreen flowering shrubs and small trees that are native to eastern and southern Asia but grow happily in most parts of Europe as well. They are admired for they large flowers which are often among the first to appear in late winter. They are not particularly demanding but it is worth to keep in mind that they prefer acidic soil and require a lot of watering.