Shrubs used as landscaping around the home add beauty, value, and also help insulate if planted near the foundation. Shrubs that flower throughout the summer months create contrast and interest, and provide a colourful palette to play off the greens of lawn and trees. While many shrubs bloom in early to late spring, planting mid- to late-summer bloomers continues the aesthetic impact all season long.
Butterfly bush (Buddleja davidii)
This striking shrub is excellent for attracting butterflies and hummingbirds. The shrub is characterised by thin willowy leaves and long 1.2 to 1.5 m 4 to 5 foot) stems topped with flowered spikes in shades of lavender, purple, pink or white. At full growth, this shrub ranges from 75 cm to 3 m (2 1/2 to 10 feet) around. Typically the shrub dies back as it overwinters, with new growth emerging each spring. The spiky, fragrant flowers bloom from July to September.
Summersweet (Clethra alnifolia)
Also called the sweet pepper bush, summersweet is native to the Eastern U.S. Found in wet swamp land, it prefers moist soil and does best in shade or filtered sun where it will not dry out; however, it can thrive in full sun if kept watered. This plant naturalises quite easily and makes a beautiful foundation or border shrub. It is a slow grower and is considered a medium-sized flowering shrub, reaching the mature height of about 1.8 m (6 feet) and spreading 1.5 m (5 feet) wide. Leaves are medium to dark green and slightly serrated. The shrub blooms in July, lasting through August. Flowers are fragrant and range in colour from white to light pink.
Rugosa rose (Rosa rugosa)
This highly tolerant rose is often found growing wild in its native eastern Asia coast shorelines, sometimes referred to as the "beach rose." Drought resistant, salt tolerant and adaptable to most any soil, the Rugosa Rose bursts with fragrant pink, rose, purple or white petal flowers throughout the summer. Contrasted with its dark green leaves, these sun-loving rapid growers can reach heights of 1.2 to 1.5 m (4 to 6 feet) and spread the same in width. In the fall these shrubs can be dappled with orange-coloured rose hips which are often made into jam.
Lacecap hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla)
Hydrangeas are magnificent bloomers, with flower clusters lasting throughout the summer. Cut and dried, the blossoms are perfect for dry arrangements and wreaths. Lacecap hydrangeas are more delicate than the larger mophead hydrangeas, but both species are wonderful accent shrubs for landscapes with colours in shades of blue, pink and white. The shrub typically grows to 1.2 m (4 feet) in both height and width. Hydrangeas need sun but can tolerate filtered shade. The farther north they are planted, the more full sun they will tolerate. Keep hydrangeas moist without over-watering or allowing them to dry out.
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