Most Popular Shrubs for Landscaping

By Matt Smolsky , last updated April 16, 2011

When you plant some of these popular landscaping shrubs, you'll enjoy year-round beauty that's virtually guaranteed. After all, these are the shrubs that have been proven reliable and beautiful by millions of gardeners for many years.

Liriope (also called Big Blue Lilyturf, Border Grass, and Monkey Grass) is a popular shrub for landscaping. It's a perennial that grows well in virtually all zones. Lilac-purple flowers that produce single seeded berries on a spike in the fall highlight its evergreen foliage.

Holly bushes offer year-round beauty and work great as foundation plantings, hedges or privacy screens. Their red berries attract birds, and their prickled leaves discourage neighbor pets and kids from crossing over into your yard.

Lilac is an all-time favorite. When this beautiful plant blooms in the spring, its fresh fragrance fills the air. You can plant lilac along your lot line, or as a single plant. Lilac grows best in zones 3 - 7, and can reach 12 feet tall.

Forsythia is another tall plant: it can reach 6 feet. It's an early spring bloomer, showing yellow flowers to welcome the arrival of warmer weather. It can be planted as a hedge, or as a decorative element in your landscaping.

Boxwood is an extremely popular landscaping shrub, often grown as a hedge. It's an evergreen best suited for zones 5 - 9. It's slow growing, and well suited as a foundation planting. Boxwood can also be pruned into a variety of shapes.

Rosa Rugosa is suited for zones 2 - 7 and is a lovely rose variety. It will need some extra care, but the cascading branches and red blooms will be well worth the work. It has a heavy fragrance and is perfect for screening or hedges, as it can reach 5 feet tall.

Spirea grows well in zones 3 - 8. It's foliage turns from green-blue in the summer to gold in autumn and attracts butterflies. It's perfect as a foundation planting or in entryways.

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