Flowering Evergreen Shrub in Dallas

blondegardener(8)March 23, 2011

Finding a shrub to suit mine and my husband's wishes is driving me mad.

Here is a picture of our sad front yard right now. (taken about a month ago and since, the grass has gotten much greener!)

The plan is to trim back the smaller bushes in the front of the house to about 2/3rds or half of the size they are now and grow hydrangeas behind them. (about 3-4ft of depth back there but hard to tell from the pictures) The large holly on the right side of the window is being replaced with a Camellia we have already purchased. We are at a loss as to what to plant on the left side.

The hubs is hellbent on an evergreen shrub and I'm hellbent on something that's much prettier and flowers pretty nice, large blooms. Needs to be around 4-5ft tall and we would love for it to have a frangrance.

I'm in North Dallas, this area gets nice morning sun and afternoon shade and the soil is being amended/replaced with a compost/expanded shale/topsoil mix for the entire area. (we have thick Texas clay)

Any suggestions? We love the idea of an Azalea or Gardenia but both aren't evergreen here and the Gardenia wouldn't last through a winter like we just had. I have Googled everything I can find but without going with another Camellia, we're at a loss as to what to do.

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I think you would have success with gardenias. My neighbor of 10 years has a tiny strip between the house and the driveway, facing northeast, that they filled with gardenias when they moved in. They are always green, and during bloom time, it is heaven out there.
They have never taken any special care of these plants during the winter, no cover, nothing. I haven't ever seen them water them.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 4:16PM
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pjtexgirl(7b DFW)

Hydrageas get very large. They will dwarf the front of your house and the window. They also languish in very high temps and may look ratty for a couple months in summer. (Can't take up water fast enough not to wilt in the heat of the day even if there is enough water.)
My suggestion would be to put the hydrangeas on the side of the house. I would use a compact variety of evergreen in front of the picture window or it will look overgrown. You also do not want ANYTHING touching your house. Everything,including mulch, should be at least 6 inches away from your foundation. I also believe that camlias, an acid loving plant, would do better in a large container. How about large containers of camelias behind the green plants? If you kept them short (if that is possible) it would look good. It would also be good to water them using 1 tbs. vinager to 1 gallon of water so they won't get chlorosis and look wierd.
I agree those hollies aren't the most flattering plants especially in a square that makes your house look boxy. A cascading,flowing plant (spirea,albelia etc....) would really soften things up a bit.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 11:32PM
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I would go with Abelias they are great bushes and you can get them in different colors and you can also get the dwarfs that don't get as large. I have 9 planted and I think they may be an option for you.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2011 at 11:44AM
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