These are some of my favorite flowering shrubs, or shrubs I can’t wait to plant this year. I love the idea of having a garden full of flowers with none of the maintenance so it’s important, if you want a garden full of flowers all summer long, to plant shrubs that will flower at different times of the year, into a orchestra of activity all season long.

David Austin Roses

I am particularly excited about the new David Austin english roses. I’ve been lusting after these particular roses for over 2 years, starting overseas they are finally available in North America. They are gorgeous double blooms that grow into magnificent shrubs and climbing roses that bloom all season long. I’m very excited to introduce these into my projects this summer. My utmost favorite is the ” juliet” shown in the images below.

.extra hardy

.proven performers

.highly fragrant

.bloom all summer

.improved cold hardiness

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New cultivators of Mock Orange

I love Mock Orange, they’re fragrance, dark green leaves, and compact shape with a blizzard of flowers in early summer are beautiful. They are a great foundation plant in a flower garden. It is hardy, easy to prune, and the red bark of a young plant is pretty in Winter, with it peeling away as the plant ages. In  gardens this past year I planted “blizzard” mock orange, as well as “snowbelle” mock orange often.  These recent introductions have larger blooms, or clusters of blooms on each branch, and a great zesty, citrus scent. More and more cultivators of these plants are becoming more available because of great popularity.


.not susceptible to serious diseases or pests ( I noticed aphids but just remove with a spray of water from the hose)

.plant in full sun, and prune right after flowering for best showing of flowers year after year. If flowering becomes sporadic trim down a foot or so from the ground for new growth that should harden and flower the next year.

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There are great varieties of hydrangeas that offer blooms all summer and very little maintenance. Some great options are “annabelle arborescens” hydrangeas which flower best in shade, but can be planted in full sun or full shade. “Limelight paniculata” which is extremely hardy even when all the other hydrangeas are wilting in the heat. The flowers are cone shaped and grow to 6-8ft tall. I planted them in a few gardens last year and will most likely continue the trend again this year. I was very happy with the “limelight” variety, and its great to have a flowering shrub for shade (“annabelle”). “little lamb” hydrangea is a smaller version of “limelight” which is great for smaller gardens.

Every year 2 or 3 more cultivators come out due to its high popularity, so there are a lot of varieties, I have yet to try them all.

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Lilacs are a go to spring flowering shrub, the scent is amazing and the compact shape is great for privacy hedging. The smaller varieties like “miss kim” can be clipped formally with small flowers, I personally love this particular shrub because of it’s clipping capabilities and dark, glossy leaves. For larger varieties “Beauty of Moscow” is my go to for hedging due to its vigorous growth and white flowers which is a bit of a switch from the traditional lilac purple.


.should be pruned late summer/fall

.full sun/part shade which is unlike most lilacs that prefer only full sun

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I have been very happy with my two weigela in my front yard. The entire plant is covered in pink flowers for a full month in early summer. It’s not very attractive in Winter but when the first flowering starts in Spring, I have all my neighbors coming over and asking me what it is. My particular cultivator is Weigela “Tango”and Weigela “Rumba”- both with bright pink flowers, that rebloom on and off all summer long, they are in full sun for most of the day and are a compact 3′ by 3′ shape.


.4 or more hours of full sun

.prune after flowering

.can bloom on and off all summer

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juliet david austin roses

snowbelle mockorange

annabelle hydrangeas

limelight hydrangeas

miss kim lilac

wine and roses weigela

What are your favorite flowering shrubs? and shrub combinations?