The Q&A Archives: Long Flowering Shrubs

Question: I'm looking for suggestions for shrubs that will bloom most of the summer. Ideally they would be evergreen, but that's not absolutely necessary. We are on the border of zone 7 and 8 and not quite far enough south for Oleander or Lantana to grow well. Crepe Myrtle's OK, but we already have a lot of that. Again, the goal is something that will put out flowers prolifically over an extended period to enhance the background of a swimming pool area.

Answer: Try one or more of these: 1.) Spiraea japonica 'Shibori' also known as 'Shirobana'. Grows 2-3' tall, blooms appear on weeping branches summer through fall. Blooms are varied shades of white, pink, and red. Prefers full sun. 2.) Lespedeza thunbergii 'Gibraltar'. Blooms mid-summer to fall. Rosy purple blooms on cascading branches. Grows 4 1/2' tall. Prefers full sun, good drainage. 3.) Mahonia aquilfolium, also known as Oregon Holly-grape. Evergreen shrub with leaves that turn bronze-red in the fall. Cluster of bright yellow flowers in spring followed by attractive blue fruit in the summer. Prefers a northern exposure or partial shade. Let us know if you need plant sources.

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