The flowering plants are primarily pink, white, yellow and blue, a soft palette that complements the natural shingles of the home. Flowering shrubs, roses, perennials, annuals and spring bulbs ensure that the garden is in bloom from March until late fall. Plants like iris, alliums, echinacea, roses and foxglove emphasize the cottage style of this colorful garden.
A native plant, mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia) has pink buds in spring that open to white cup-shape flowers. This native typically grows 5 to 8 feet tall and wide. Mountain laurel is a stand-out evergreen shrub because it tolerates shade (although best flowering occurs in light shade). Look for varieties with red, pink or bicolor blooms, double or large flowers, and buds that stay tight, adding an interesting texture to the shrub. Hardy in Zones 4-9.
Deer resistant Grevillea x 'Noell' is a low-growing, evergreen shrub that's useful to grow on a bank, or as a hedge or border. Rose and white blooms stud its graceful branches, adding splashes of color for a long time in winter. The plants tolerate poor soil and drought after they're established.
This evergreen shrub is a workhorse in a shrub border, delivering strong year-round color. Evergreen winter leaves provide a beautiful backdrop to white, bell-like blooms that appear in spring. New leaves emerge fiery pink, fading to white-edged green in summer. Plants grow 4 to 5 feet tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 5-9. Good to know: This pieris doesn’t need pruning, but accepts it easily if you need to keep it a certain size or shape. For best results, prune after flowering.
Camellia shrubs blend beautiful blooms with tough evergreen leaves. October Magic Ruby Camellia sasanqua (Camellia sasanqua ‘Green 02-003’) flowers heavily in fall opening small, Christmas-red, fully double blossoms. Plants grow in full sun to part shade, reaching 3-4 feet high and 4-5 feet wide. Hardy in Zones 7-9.
Add an evergreen shrub that also brings a burst of fragrance with its pretty pink blooms. Spring flowering is the heaviest, but blossoms continue to form through summer and early fall. Compact plants grow 2 to 3 feet tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 6-9. Botanical name: Daphne x transatlantica ‘BLAFRA’
A pink rose that rosarian David Austin himself calls “possibly the best rose we’ve ever bred,” ‘Olivia Rose Austin’ blooms up to three weeks earlier than most English roses. The soft pink flowers have a fruity scent and are backed by dark green foliage; the bushes grow to 3-½ feet tall and have strong disease-resistance.
Bright golden blooms cover this shrub in mid-spring, beckoning bees and other pollinators by the dozen. Use Scotch broom as a ground cover, bed edging or in containers. Plants grow 12 to 18 inches tall and wide. This plant is not recommended for the Pacific Northwest. Hardy in Zones 6-8. Botanical name: Cytisus scoparius
Vining Carolina Jessamine unfolds its yellow blooms from late winter into early spring. Don’t be afraid to grow it on a wall or fence; it won’t overtake nearby shrubs and trees. It’s also pretty on a trellis or arbor. Grown in USDA hardiness zones 7 to 9, it performs as an evergreen or semi-evergreen.
Multi-season interest abounds in sweetspire (Itea virginica), and Little Henry is no exception. This native shrub is versatile, growing in full sun to full shade. In early summer, sweetly fragrant flowers cover the plant. As autumn unfolds, leaves sparkle with red and orange hues. Best fall color occurs on plants in full sun. Blooms attract butterflies and other pollinators to the point that bushes literally buzz with activity. Deer-resistant plants grow 24 to 36 inches tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 5-9.
It’s tough to beat the floral perfume of lilacs. These flowering shrubs open blooms from late spring to early summer, depending on variety. The blossoms offer traditional colors, like purple, lavender and white. You can also find lilacs with pink, yellow and even bicolor blooms. A few lilacs actually lack fragrance, so it’s important to do your homework before buying a plant. Some of the most fragrant varieties include light blue ‘President Grevy (Zones 3-7, shown), wine-red ‘Congo’ (Zones 4-7), pink ‘Maiden’s Blush’ (Zones 2-7) and white ‘Beauty of Moscow’ (Zones 3-7). Plants grow from shrub to small tree size, reaching from 3 to 15 feet tall. Hardiness depends on variety, from Zones 2-9.
It’s tough to beat the floral perfume of lilacs. These flowering shrubs open blooms from late spring to early summer, depending on variety. The blossoms offer traditional colors, like purple, lavender and white, and you can also find lilacs with pink, yellow and even bicolor blooms. A few lilacs actually lack fragrance, so it’s important to do your homework before buying a plant. Some of the most fragrant varieties include wine-red ‘Congo’ (Zones 4-7), pink ‘Maiden’s Blush’ (Zones 2-7), light blue ‘President Grevy' (Zones 3-7) and white ‘Beauty of Moscow’ (Zones 3-7). Plants grow from shrub to small tree size, reaching from 3 to 15 feet tall. Hardiness depends on variety, from Zones 2-9.
Crank up the midsummer garden with the sweetly fragrant blooms of ‘Crystalina’ summersweet (Clethra alnifolia). A native shrub, summersweet attracts all kinds of pollinators, including butterflies. Plants are deer-resistant and, unlike the true native Clethra, 'Crystalina' does not sucker and take over the yard. Grows 30-36 inches tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 4-9.
English Rose 'Lady Emma Hamilton'
Color: dark red buds with dashes of orange. Fully open flowers are tangerine orange on petal insides, with yellow orange on the outside. Leaves very dark bronzy green that evolves to dark green at maturity.
Flower: double/full bloom
Fragrance: strong delicious fruity fragrance with hints of pear, grape and citrus.
Shrub size: 4 ft tall x 3 ft wide
RHS "Award of Garden Merit"
Savannah, a hybrid tea rose, should take a bow. This variety was named Best Hybrid Tea, Most Fragrant Rose and Most Outstanding Rose at the 2015 Biltmore International Rose Trials. It's able to withstand the heat and humidity in southern gardens and is especially resistant to black spot and mildew. The vigorous shrubs grow to 4 feet in zones 5-9, producing glossy green leaves and lots of fragrant, salmon-pink blooms in the summer.
If you think you know butterfly bush, think again. ‘Blue Chip Jr.’ has outstanding qualities, including fragrance, continuous blooming without deadheading, non-invasive and drought tolerant. Of course, it also attracts butterflies by the dozens. It grows to a tidy 18 to 30 inches tall and wide—a perfect size for edging a bed or walkway. Hardy in Zones 5-9. Called “summer lilac” in Oregon and Washington, where it is approved for sale.
If space is tight in your yard, you can still enjoy lush hydrangea blooms with this small shrub, which grows 2 to 3 feet tall and wide. Flower color shifts from a deep violet-purple in acid soils to pink in basic soils. Use this reblooming hydrangea in containers, as a specimen plant, to edge planting beds or as an informal hedge. Hardy in Zones 5-9. Botanical name: Hydrangea macrophylla
Discover the beauty of a bush clematis—Clematis recta. This clematis grows like a perennial, dying back to the ground each year when hard freezes arrive. White, fragrant flowers appear in late spring to early summer, followed by more blooms later in the year. In the garden, grow Clematis recta like a shrub, although stems tend to tumble over without some kind of support. Many gardeners grow this pretty clematis beside taller perennials that give it a natural, easy support. To prune, in late winter or early spring, cut all stems back to 6 to 9 inches above a pair of strong, healthy buds. Vines grow 2 to 4 feet tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 3 to 9.