Shrubs Suitable for UK Gardens

Shrubs are the backbone of any garden and if chosen carefully they can provide all year round interest. They are also a lot less trouble to look after than many other plants. Once established they usually require a little maintenance pruning now and then and a good feed once a year.

There is a huge variety of shrubs available, with a wide range of characteristics that can be used to suit virtually any aspect in the garden.

With shrubs you can add interest throughout the year by choosing plants that flower in different seasons. Shrubs also provide attractive leaves as well as flowers, many of which are highly scented. Deciduous shrubs provide contrasting backgrounds in summer and colour variations in autumn. Evergreen shrubs can be used to give much needed structure in the winter.

Shrubs are also very good at providing shelter and privacy and many shrubs make good hedges.


The following lists just a few of the shrubs suitable for domestic gardens in Great Britain (England/Scotland/Ireland):

Deciduous shrubs suitable for domestic UK gardens

Chaenomeles

Chaenomeles
Flowering quince

Cornus alba Sibirica

Cornus alba
Dogwood

Broom

Genista
Broom

witch hazel yellow tasles

Hamamelis mollis
Chinese witch hazel

hydrangea white flowers

Hydrangea
Hortensia

Kerria japonica

Kerria japonica
Jew's Mallow

philadelphus white flowers

Philadelphus
Mock Orange

Ribes (flowering currant)

Ribes
Ornamental Currant

Spiraea prunifolia

Spiraea
 

tamarix pink flowers

Tamarix
 


Evergreen shrubs suitable for domestic UK gardens

variegated Aucuba Japonica

Aucuba Japonica
Spotted Laurel

skimmia with red berries

Skimmia japonica
 

Camellia

Camellia
 

Ceanothus repens

Ceanothus
Californian lilac

erica heather

Erica
Heather

escallonia pink flowers

Escallonia
 

Fatsia japonica flower

Fatsia japonica
False Caster Oil Plant

Garrya elliptica

Garrya elliptica
Silk tassel bush

hebe purple flower

Hebe
Veronica

Ilex aquifolium

Ilex aquifolium
Common holly

mahonia japonica

Mahonia japonica
 

Berberis linearifolia

Berberis
Barberry

Nandina domestica

Nandina domestica
Heavenly Bamboo

Pyracantha

Pyracantha
Firethorn


Evergreen shrubs are of great value because they create form and shape in the garden and provide all year round interest. However, if you plant too many evergreens they can overpower the planting scheme. The ideal is to select a mixture of deciduous and evergreen shrubs to create all year round interest and provide subtle changes each month. Most flowering shrubs bloom for just a short time (around 2 to 4 weeks), after which the leaves will still form a useful backdrop. If you have a very small garden you can train certain taller shrubs to take the place of trees and provide interesting focal points.

See the full index of Shrubs for UK Gardens