The Q&A Archives: Flowers And Shrubs

Question: I recently moved and am renting my house. There are some shrubs and small bush like things in the gardens around my house. I really want flowers, especially ones that will attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Is it okay to mix flowers with shrubs? I have quite a bit of extra space in front of all of these shrubs and bushes.

Answer: You can spruce up your yard by adding annuals or perennials around the shrubs. The key is to find plants that share the same cultural requirements. Some flowering plants do best in full sun and others perform best in various degrees of shade. It's also important to consider how much water the companion plants need, so you won't be drowning one while providing the required water to the others. An excellent reference book for gardeners in your area is Sunset Western Garden Book. There are special sections within the book with lists of shade-loving and sun-loving flowering plants as well as trees and shrubs. Check your local library for a copy of the book (ISBN# 0-376-03851-9)

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