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Small Scale Shrubs for Midwest Landscape

My wife and I would like a low-maintenance backyard and were thinking of planting shrubs. Can you suggest some smaller varieties, about 2 feet tall, that aren’t evergreens and would work in our Liberty, IN yard?

Lucky for you nurseries are selling a wider variety of small scale plants. Be sure to match the plant to the growing conditions as well as the available space.

For full sun try Frosty potentilla. This heat and drought tolerant plant produces white blooms throughout the summer and grows to 2 feet tall.

Midnight Wine weigela has purple foliage and pink flowers on a 12 to 18 inch tall plant. The little larger (3 feet tall by 4 feet wide) Dark Horse weigela has magenta flowers and bronze foliage. Both weigelas will tolerate part shade but have the best foliage color in full sun. If you like colorful foliage you will like My Monet weigela. This 12 to 18 inch tall plant is covered with green, cream and pink foliage and produces pink flowers in the spring. It grows well in full to partial sun. Provide a bit of afternoon shade in hot climates.

Magic carpet spirea produces pinkish-purple flowers late spring through summer on an 18 to 24 inch plant covered with has red tipped golden green foliage that turns bronze in fall. Little Princess with rose-pink flowers on a 2 to 3 feet tall plant and Dwarf alpine with similar flowers on a 12 to 18 inch plant are two other small scale summer blooming spireas. The spireas will tolerate full sun to partial shade.

The sun loving Coral Beauty cotoneaster produces white flowers in spring, coral-red fruit that persists into winter and glossy foliage that develops a purple tinge in fall and will remain evergreen in most area. All this interest packed on a 2 foot plant.


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