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Readers Respond: What Are the Best Bushes to Grow?

Responses: 25


From the article: List of Shrubs

Many a landscaping need is best met by growing bushes (shrubs) Why? Because bushes are the Goldilocks of the plant world. Trees can be too tall to grow in a certain area in the yard where you need color; they can also be high maintenance, as when trimming them requires the use of pole pruners. Conversely, many perennials lack the height to make a statement from afar.

Enter bushes, those versatile plants of an intermediate size. What bushes would you list as your favorites? Click the link and fill in the boxes provided to let others know your choices for the best bushes to grow -- and why you've chosen those particular bushes.

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Best Bushes for Northern Nevada

Because not every shrub does well in northern Nevada, I have discovered forsythia and flowering plum. Forsythia gets the bulbs ready to go. The bulbs I've planted open throughout spring and summer and add a lot of color. I've added bulbs with lilac, white, violet, and pale baby blue flowers. I've also added several peonies of different colors. All my pines do well throughout winter with minimal water (if and when it snows). Because of the lack of water this year, the wild horses have been visiting the neighborhood for food. Most of our neighbors don't want them here. But we love being able to observe these majestic animals.
—Guest Judy

Red Mexican Bird-of-Paradise

My choices for best bushes are Mexican bird-of-paradise (Caesalpinia), Hydrangeas, Bolivian sunset (beautiful clumping habit). Also shrimp plant (Justicia), which blooms all season in my zone 9 garden, and white Bougainvillea.

My Lovely Bushes

My lovely bushes are butterfly bush, forsythia, hydrangeas, bridal wreath spireas and Sensation lilac.
—Guest aldin

Best Bushes to Grow

I have several bushes I love. First is the Viburnums with their sweet smelling flowers in the spring followed with berries for the birds and great fall color. Another would be the crape myrtles which have beautiful flowers from the last of July through the first of September and the peeling bark is beautiful in the winter. Then there are the beautiful Sambucus elders with the outstanding black leaves and almost white cluster of blooms, followed by berries for the birds. I also have several of the small Japanese maples which are also eye-catchers. Ninebark and Seven Sons also have beautiful bark for winter interest. The hydrangea bushes are beautiful with their huge blooms which will add winter interest with their dried blooms too. The Elder bush was created for the people in the north that could not grow Japanese maples [i.e., some types of Japanese maple -- ed.]. I am so lucky to live in Zone 7 where I can grow both.
—Guest Shelby24019

Longing for Butterfly Bush

Unfortunately, I can't grow a butterfly bush. Here in Wisconsin, we've been told we're creeping into Zone 5, too, but I don't believe it. Some years it may work out fine, with warmer temps, but there's always that chance of a sneaky, rough winter and then the Zone 5 plants can be history, which is heart-breaking.
—Guest eOaxMiOhgMX


My pick is forsythia, because of its beautiful bright yellow color. And it is as beautiful fall as it is in the spring.
—Guest journey

This Is "for the Birds"

Thanks so much I felt like you were talking to me. My husband and I bought our place to retire to. I have an open palate and a lot of work (but then no work). Our "best bushes" would be ones that attract birds (although we'll keep a few treats for us!). Planning on doing it slowly.
—Guest Debra

Quince, Rose Favorite Bushes

For this time of year (February 16), it is my quince bush that is starting to bloom, just in time for my anniversary of 35 years to my wonderful husband, Bobby. In the next few weeks, it will be my Lady Banks Rose.

Three Favorite Bushes

I love lots of different bushes, but my three favorites are butterfly bushes, hydrangeas (for the gorgeous flowers and the way they draw birds and butterflies) and Bridal Wreath spireas. I think my Bridal Wreath spireas are so pretty.
—Guest Musicat

Best Bushes: 2 Fragrant Favorites

My favorites are the Sensation lilac (it's a bi-color) and, of course, my beloved double peonies.

Lights Azaleas My Favorite Bushes

Aside from all fruit bushes, the "Lights" series of orange/yellow Azaleas. Simply drop-dead stunning!

Drift Rose My Best Bush, This Year

This year my favorite bush is the Drift rose. They come in several colors: pink, coral, peach, and red. They bloom so much that you can hardly see the foliage. They only reach 18 inches so they are great as a border. The foliage is of course green in the summer, but the new growth is a reddish color. Even in the winter they do not loose all of their leaves. I am very pleased with their performance in almost any condition. Try them, you will love them.
—Guest Teresa Merrell

So Many Favorite Bushes...

First, lilac for the, what else, fragrant blooms. Potentilla, for the long lasting, cheery, bright yellow blooms. Spirea, they always remind me of a bridal bouquet. Last but not least, Honeysuckle, again for the fragrance.

Diablo Ninebark Has Stolen My Heart

The Ninebarks are really great here in Colorado. Purple color leaves and great pink flowers in spring. They are fast growing and full in just one year. So many are my favorites, I am replacing many shrubs in the complex where I live / work and trying new varieties. Thanks for all your comments and help on all the various shrubs that do so well and look fantastic! [Editor's note: Glad to be able to help you in your selection of the best bushes to grow, FiestyFlowerGal!]

Best Bushes: Ninebark, Viburnum

Ninebark 'Dart's Gold': lovely color, pretty flowers, interesting bark. Also arrowwood viburnum for fall color.
—Guest mark

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What Are the Best Bushes to Grow?

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