What to plant in front of the house

Updated June 26, 2017

Your front yard provides visitors with their initial view of your home and landscape. Focusing your landscaping efforts on your front yard provides the best first impression. The plants you grow in front of your house create a warm, welcoming atmosphere.

Border Plants

Border plants define areas in front of your house. Suitable areas are along the edges of sidewalks, driveways and porches. Small shrubs and flowering plants work well for this purpose. Small, compact shrubs include dwarf lilac, pygmy barberry and dwarf burning bush. Flowering plants that work nicely include snapdragons, petunias, pansies and zinnias. These plants are suitable for growing in large pots lining the edges of the front steps, creating a colourful ascent to your front door.


Shrubs perform a number of functions in the front yard. In addition to the compact ones performing as border plants, shrubs are suitable as ornamentals in central locations or as hedges forming living fences. Colourful, sprawling shrubs, such as the butterfly bush, wild rose, forsythia and spiraea, make bold and interesting statements when planted in front of your home. Hedges in the front of your home require regular pruning to keep them attractive and maintained. Arbor vitae, honeysuckle and cotoneaster are all good choices for hedge plantings. Evergreen varieties provide year-round enjoyment and colour.

Flower Beds

Flowerbeds in provide seasonal colour and pleasant aromas. Many flower varieties draw birds and butterflies to your yard. The best flowers for a flowerbed depend on your climate and soil. Flowers growing naturally in the surrounding countryside are usually best suited for local flowerbeds. Common choices for flowerbeds include lupins, daisies, baby's breath, cosmos and bachelor buttons.


While large trees shade your lawn and home, they can obstruct the view and overwhelm the landscape. Large oaks, cottonwoods and elms are well suited for the back of your home, while smaller varieties of ornamental trees look best in front. Suitable front yard trees include Chinese juniper, flowering cherry and dwarf willow. Planting these trees to one side of your landscape balances the yard and neighbouring plants.

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About the Author

Piper Li, a professional freelance writer, began writing in 1989. Her articles appear online at Biz Mojo, Walden University and various other websites. She is the co-editor for "Kansas Women: Focus on Health." With a bachelor's degree in journalism from Mesa State, Li enjoys writing about health, horticulture and business management.