Some Showy Spring Flowering Shrubs
Every plant has its time to bloom and if you want to keep your garden looking interesting all year round with flowers and foliage then its important when choosing your plants to consider their growth habits, ultimate size, flowering time, whether they have berries or not, maintenance requirements such as pruning or dead heading, seasonal colour, how they contrast or work together in the garden and of course soil type as well as where to plant making sure that its gets the amount of sun or shade that it requires.
One of my favourite shrubs for vibrant colour is about to come into its own now, the Flowering Currant. This lovely shrub has aromatic leaves, not a particularly sweet fragrance though, but the flowers are lovely showy pendant-like racemes that hang downwards, flower colour varies from one cultivar to another of white, pink and red, after flowering it produces black berries too. Pruning after flowering will keep it bushier, it will also make an attractive and colourful informal hedge.
Another very bright and cheerful early flowering shrub is ‘Jew’s Mantle’ also known as Kerria japonica ‘Pleniflora’, with its upright suckering habit and vigorous growth it will soon fill an area, its easy to grow with bright green veined oval leaves with bright golden yellow double flowers on green stems. It’s an excellent shrub for part shade and will brighten up a dull area; and is ideal for a north facing wall or border. It’s best kept out of direct sun so that the flowers don’t bleach and to keep it looking nice just prune out old shoots after flowering.
Another absolutely stunning shrub is Prunus incisa ‘Kojo-no-mai’, the Fuji Cherry, a very pretty dwarf early flowering cherry that produces a mass of delicate looking pink tinged white flowers with yellow stamens that emerge from deep pink buds. Its not only grown as a shrub but is often grafted onto a stem to form a small tree and with its unusual distinctive twisted stems makes an ideal choice for a Japanese style garden, a shrub or flower border or patio. This lovely plant is easy to grow in well-drained soil in sun or part shade and can be easily kept in shape by pruning after flowering.