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PLANT PROFILES: LOW-SPREADING SHRUB

Landscapes of movement present unique challenges…

…for the designed plant palette. Different plants and the way they are used can evoke raw subconscious feelings. Using a lot of plants with little ornamental qualities in common can be overwhelming. The more variety, color, and texture, the more the mind must stop to pick out each element it’s seeing.

So when designing for tight spaces, particularly down walking paths, parkways, or in dividing islands, more uniform plantings of LOW-SPREADING SHRUBS helps create pleasing uniformity and pattern throughout the corridor. This also helps create movement in the landscape by enticing the user along.

In general, LOW-SPREADING SHRUBS are great for impoverished landscapes where other plants have trouble surviving. Many in this category slowly creep outwards with age, and a few fix the soil as they go to optimize growing conditions. They can be pruned to stay within a growing habit, though it is best to give them space to spread!

 

LARGE TREE ORNAMENTAL TREE LARGE FLOWERING SHRUB MID-FLOWERING SHRUB LOW-SPREADING SHRUB UPRIGHT EVERGREEN LOW-SPREADING EVERGREEN
FLOWERING PERENNIAL FOLIAGE PERENNIAL UPRIGHT ORNAMENTAL GRASS SHRUB-LIKE ORNAMENTAL GRASS FLOWERING GROUNDCOVER EVERGREEN GROUNDCOVER VINE

 

KEMORA PICKS Azalea, Chokeberry, Cotoneaster, Rose, Sumac

SUN Full Sun to Partial Shade
ORNAMENTAL INTERESTS
LOW-SPREADING SHRUBS provide ornamental
value in leaf color, texture, or floral displays.
A few varieties also boast berries to sustain
native bird populations in the winter.
DESIGN USE
As the lowest of the deciduous shrubs,
LOW-SPREADING SHRUBS act as a layering element while providing unique interest and bloom times when other species may be dormant. Use in front
of taller shrubs or to spread over larger areas for modern uniformity.
ALTERNATIVES
Like the height and creeping nature of a LOW-SPREADING SHRUB but hate that it looses its leaves in winter? LOW-SPREADING EVERGREENS layer well with larger shrubs and trees while creating privacy
and winter interest.
Sumac Photo Credit: Kerry Woods via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]; Chokeberry Photo Credit: F. D. Richards via Flickr [CC BY-SA 2.0];
Rose Photo Credit: Patrick Standish via Flickr [CC BY 2.0]
.

Plant info found on Google is not always precise as it is an aggregate of information from around the world—so we want to share our observations from years of getting our hands dirty in the Second City. This post is the latest in one of our newest series, PLANT PROFILES, where we explore each plant category as well as the preferred species of Kemora. We love plants which in turn gives us a trained eye for trouble-shooting them. And it is our hope you will come to love them too!

Kemora Landscapes is a full-service design, build, and maintenance company based in Chicago.

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