The Q&A Archives: Evergreen Shrub/Full SHade/No Yew or Boxwood/No Thorns

Question: I am looking for an evergreen shrub for privacy for full shade. I don't want boxwood and cannot have yew. Any ideas? No shrubs with thorns either please.

Answer: Most evergreens really would grow better with sun than in full shade.You might be able to use the smaller cherry laurel such as Prunus laurocerasus 'Otto Luyken' or 'Schipkaensis'; you might be able to use a rhododendron such as one of the Catawba types; you might be able to use Aucuba which is a broad leafed evergreen that truly requires shade. You might be able to use one of the small leafed hollies such as Ilex crenata "Green Lustre" although it looks a lot like boxwood. You might be able to use one of the leatherleaf viburnums. Your local nursery staff and/or county extension may have additional (or very different) suggestions based on a more detailed understanding of the growing conditions where you need to plant and also your design goals. Good luck with your screening.

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