Answer: There are many hardy shrubs that will perform well in that challenging climate, provided they're protected from the relentless winter winds until they're well established. I've heard that the deer are plentiful up there, so you may need to use a repellent to prevent deer from browsing.
Here's a list of shrubs for you to try: lilac, hydrangea, azalea/rhododendron, mountain laurel, rugosa rose, and spireas. It's best to have your soil tested for nutrient levels and pH before planting. The Michigan extension service (ph# 517/355-2308) can help you with testing information. I suggest sourcing your plants at local nurseries, since they'll be best adapted to the region. Enjoy!
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