Summer Blooming Beauties: Shrubs to Carry your Garden through the Dog Days

Is your garden looking a bit tired these days? Need something to jazz it up? We’ve got a few suggestions for shrubs that will add impact to your garden year-round, and especially through the dog days of summer.

Caryopteris prefer full sun to part-shade. With aromatic foliage, a compact habit and low water requirements, these little shrubs really hold their own.

(Img. courtesy of T & L Nursery)

Caryopteris ‘Hint of Gold’ is a particularly beautiful variety. Golden yellow leaves with mint green margins and puffs of blue flower that bloom into the late summer attract butterflies, bees and other beneficial insects.

Because it blooms on new wood, you can prune in early spring to promote vigorous new growth. Keep in mind that in wet, soggy soil the crowns will rot. Be sure to plant it somewhere with loose, well-drained soil.

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The glorious purple blossoms on butterfly bushes are ample reason to include them in your garden. Drought tolerant and attractive to wildlife such as butterflies and hummingbirds, these exuberant shrubs are hard to resist. Unfortunately, these beauties can grow rather enthusiastically and spread all over your yard.

Thanks to horticulturists at the University of Arkansas, we can have our cake and eat it too. The new cultivar Buddleja x. ‘Asian Moon’ actually has sterile flowers which will not set seed. This means longer lasting flowers and no more unwanted seedlings.

Asian Moon is a real beauty with lovely tiny purple tubular flowers specked with orange throats. It is a repeat bloomer and you’ll want to prune it each spring and again in July to encourage re-blooming.  A fast though symmetrical grower, it can grow up to 7 feet tall and 5 foot wide.

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Hydrangea ‘Limelight’ is one of our favorite Hydrangeas. Show stopping creamy-white blossoms that hold a bright, refreshed color all summer long. Its flower heads are actually 6 to 12 inches long! Come fall, watch them change to deep pink.

One of the best aspects of ‘Limelight’ is that you can rely on consistent color from them no matter your soil PH.  In addition, these blooms can take a good wind without collapsing, a definite advantage in our windy county. Lastly, ‘Limelight’ is extremely hardy and has even overwintered in Zone 3.

In other words, the question is not whether you should grow Hydrangea ‘Limelight’ but rather, why wouldn’t you grow this vivacious beauty?

A special thanks to T & L Nursery for their lovely image of Caryopteris. Don’t forget that our July Calendar Days: Tree and Shrub Sale starts today. Twenty percent off trees and shrubs for one week. And be sure to check our Facebook page for extra promotions and great deals.

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