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A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Tuesday - September 01, 2009

From: Boise, ID
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Shrubs with sparse leaves and flowers for creek in Idaho
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for several shrubs that have spindly limbs and sparse leaves with flowers. The idea is to place them in front of windows or other views to add a lacey/veiled effect for the observer. I live along a creek, zones 5-7 with naturally growing Ponderosa Pines. Deer do pass by but not often.

ANSWER:

Usually, people are looking for dense shrubbery to hide eyesores.  I can't remember someone asking for spindly limbs and sparse leaves before.  Anyway, here are a few that I found that met your criteria for flowers—the sparse leaves and spindly limbs are probably a matter of individual perception, however, so you will have to decide if these meet your criteria.  You can look yourself for more shrubs for Idaho landscaping by doing a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plant Database and selecting Idaho from the Select State or Province option and 'Shrub' from the Habit (general appearance) option.  

Amelanchier alnifolia (Saskatoon serviceberry).  Here is more information.

Ceanothus sanguineus (redstem ceanothus).  Here are photos and more information.

Ceanothus velutinus (snowbrush ceanothus).  Here is more information.

Philadelphus lewisii (Lewis' mock orange).  Here is more information.

Purshia tridentata (antelope bitterbrush).  Here is more information.

Rhododendron albiflorum (Cascade azalea).  Here is more information.

Sorbus scopulina (Greene's mountain ash).  Here is more information.


Amelanchier alnifolia

Ceanothus velutinus

Philadelphus lewisii

Purshia tridentata

Rhododendron albiflorum

Sorbus scopulina

 

 

 

 

 

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