The Q&A Archives: Shrubs for Northwest Wall

Question: Our new addition faces northwest--a little more west than north--and we need to put in shrubs to break the long horizontal. There's a ten foot area between two windows, which is especially barren; it gets several hours of late day sunlight. The addition is one story, and we wouldn't want shrubs with the potential to grow very tall. It would be nice to consider evergreens and/or something colorful and attractive to birds, but we are mindful of the limited sunlight.

Answer: Here are some ideas:

Rhododendrons. Burning bush--Euonymous alatus 'Compacta' (bright red fall foliage). Holly (they come in all sizes; be sure you have both male and female plants if you want berries). Mountain laurel--Kalmia latifolia (many cultivars). There are some varieties of yews (Taxus spp.) that might do well there too. Perhaps a mix of a few different shrubs would look nice and provide more interest. Just remember that rhododendrons and mountain laurel like a moist, acidic soil.

Hope this gets you started!

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