Design suggestion for shrubs behind perennials in narrow area

ls8989May 24, 2012

Last year I created a backyard shrub/perennial bed that's about 35 long and 8 feet wide. (no flowers yet, pulled everything out to re do the bed). I need a couple of different shrubs (a few evergreens would be nice) for the background up against a 6' slat wooden fence. Experimented with camellias last year and they did not thrive. We brought in good garden soil and installed a connection to the sprinkler system this year and the hydrangeas that are across the gravel path from this new bed are thriving- a bit leggy, but blooming their heads off. Morning shade and about 4 hours of pretty hot afternoon sun.

I like varying heights but not too many varieties so it won't take away from the flowers. Suggestions? I have Indian Hawthornes in there now and they are just too short. I don't mind keeping a couple - just not in the back.

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deviant-deziner(Oh zone)

The good old work horse 'privet' might be a consideration.
If there is space enough, English Laurel.
In the photo below we used Prunus Carolina against the fence and framed the view with two arborvitea.
From Pools

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 10:33AM
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Hot afternoon sun is problematic. Here in my area (zone 7a, central Delaware) nandina would thrive in this placement. Camillia would be doomed. Hollies, boxwood, pieris, all are good shrubs which will perform adequately in afternoon sun. Where are you in Georgia? Georgia ranges for zone 6b to 8b, I believe. This is a big range.

You have an automatic sprinkler system? How often do you turn it on and for how long? For shrubs, once established, an infrequent but deep watering is preferable to frequent shallow watering which would promote surface roots and lead to drought intolerance. Improper watering can contribute to difficulty with shrubs.

Pictures are most helpful.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 11:24AM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Most camellias and hydrangeas don't like a lot of sun.

I have a similar bed along the screened porch. It's shady until about 1 pm then full sun. Have it planted with a gardenia, plumbago, pineapple sage, a dwarf loropetalum, a small obelisk with vines, cuphea, sweetspire, abelia, Mexican bush sage, ornamental grasses, agastache, 'Blue Star' asters, Shasta daisies, coneflowers, pentas and thyme.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 11:44AM
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I got a steal on three Bright and Tight Cherry Laurels yesterday so I bought those and dragged them into this narrow bed. I will take a photo tomorrow. I also bought a bunch of red twig dogwoods because pike's marked them down to $5 each so I couldn't help myself. Have no idea where to put those in this yard. deviant, I love the photo! Are those peonies in between? it's dangerous because I literally live three blocks from Pike's. They see me coming and start marking things down.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 12:35AM
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I took a photo. The cherry laurels are still in their pots. I bought three, and the third one is an equal distance down further in the border. If three looks too crowded, I can always put one someplace else. I can relocate those Indian Hawthornes too, but then I need something else for mid size.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 9:45PM
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