My Favorite Dwarf Shrubs to Use in Durham Gardens

If you asked me what types of plants are most commonly used in my landscape designs, the answer would be dwarf shrubs.  The reason is simple – they will fit almost anywhere!  Most clients have at least one area of their property that is constrained – the distance between the front of the house and the walkway is a common example.  A mixed bed of dwarf shrubs tends to be the perfect solution – the plants are small enough that I can use multiple varieties for interest without creating a bed that will be overgrown in the future.  Read on to learn about some of my favorite varities.

Ilex crenata ‘Soft Touch’ – Soft Touch Japanese Holly
Ilex crenata ‘Soft Touch’ – Soft Touch Japanese Holly

While the Soft Touch Holly isn’t the most interesting plant by itself, it is an excellent team player when it comes to garden design.  Reaching just 2-3’ in height and spread, this plant combines well with larger evergreen or deciduous shrubs in the foreground or as a background plant to low grasses, groundcovers or perennials.

Spiraea ‘Little Princess’ – Little Princess Spirea
Spiraea ‘Little Princess’ – Little Princess Spirea

Looking for a small shrub that blooms throughout the summer and is highly adaptable?  Little Princess Spirea is your answer.  Reaching just 2-3’ in height with a spread of 4-5’ this plant packs a big punch in a low maintenance package.  I like to combine it with other shrubs – encore azaleas, hydrangeas, or hollies are all good partners but it also works well with grasses and as a mass planting with trees.

Itea ‘Little Henry’ – Little Henry Itea
Itea ‘Little Henry’ – Little Henry Itea

Need a small plant but also interested in natives?  Consider Little Henry Itea.  This dwarf reaches 3-4’ in height and spread and can fit in almost any garden bed.  In addition to the summer flowers it also provides excellent red fall color.

Interested in adding some dwarf shrubs to your Durham property?  Contact Bright Leaf Landscaping at 919-619-4460 or fill out our online contact form. Design and installation are our expertise, and we are always happy to meet with new clients to discuss potential projects!