En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
4 ratings

Saturday - May 29, 2010

From: Fort Branch, IN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Flowering and evergreen shrubs for landscape in Indiana
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in Southern Indiana and we are getting ready to redesign our front landscape. Currently, we have some yews and other shrubs that are unruly and require a lot of pruning and care. My husband hates to trim the bushes and I prefer flowering plants. We are wanting to know of some possibilities for low maintenance, flowering shrubs and evergreens or both in one plant. All I can find are azaleas and rhodos. Also if I chose mainly azaleas, what other greens would complement them? I'm even considering a dwarf tree of some kind as accent if it didn't get too large. Thank you for your help!

ANSWER:

On our Native Plant Database you can do a COMBINATION SEARCH by selecting Indiana from the Select State or Province box and then 'Shrub' under Habit (general appearance) to find shrubs native to Indiana.  We don't really have a way to search for evergreen plants in the database and Indiana doesn't really have a lot of native evergreen shrubs, but here are a few I found by looking at the different species pages of the Indiana native shrubs.

Chamaedaphne calyculata (leatherleaf) is evergreen and flowering, and here are more photos and information.

Juniperus communis var. depressa (common juniper) is evergreen, but not flowering, and here are photos and more information.

Kalmia latifolia (mountain laurel) is evergreen and flowering

Mahonia repens (creeping barberry) is evergreen and flowering

For native Indiana flowering shrubs that aren't evergreen, you can find quite a few on our Indiana Recommended list.  On this list are commercially available plants native to Indiana that are suitable for landscaping.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option in the side bar to select characteristics important to you.  For instance. you can choose 'Shrub' in the GENERAL APPEARANCE to narrow the list.  You could also limit the results by making a choice in LIGHT REQUIREMENT and/or SOIL MOISTURE. Here are a few flowering plants from that list that aren't evergreen:

Cornus alternifolia (alternateleaf dogwood)

Dasiphora fruticosa ssp. floribunda (shrubby cinquefoil)  This shrub can be evergreen in some locations.

Physocarpus opulifolius (common ninebark)

Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (coralberry)

You can do a similar search for trees in the Indiana Recommended list.  Here are three smaller flowering trees from the list:

Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac) has blossoms, showy red fruit and spectacular autumn leaf color.

Prunus americana (American plum)

Cercis canadensis (eastern redbud) 

Here are photos from our Image Gallery:


Chamaedaphne calyculata

Juniperus communis

Kalmia latifolia

Mahonia repens

Cornus alternifolia

Dasiphora fruticosa ssp. floribunda

Physocarpus opulifolius

Symphoricarpos orbiculatus

Rhus typhina

 

Prunus americana

Cercis canadensis
 

More Shrubs Questions

Floristic Quality Assessment program in Texas?
January 19, 2009 - Do you have knowledge of a Floristic Quality Assessment program for Texas such as the ones used in Indiana and Illinois?
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native Eugenia in Scottsdale AZ
June 02, 2012 - I have 5 eugenia topiaries in my courtyard in pots..I notice as the days here in Phoenix get hotter and dry (as usual) they are starting to look bad, even though they are under a shelter out of the di...
view the full question and answer

Spring care for Garrya ovata from Pflugerville, TX
February 24, 2014 - Hello again, Mr. S-P, I planted a Mexican silktassel in April 2012 (purchased at the WFC). It has done well, but the leaves are bronzed and splotchy from this winter's freezes. All the stems are...
view the full question and answer

Decline ot Heartleaf rosemallow from Austin
March 26, 2012 - My tulipan del monte -a new small plant from the wildflower center--did great all winter and was forming a new flower bud, just died in a matter of a few days. It looks like it "dried up", no visib...
view the full question and answer

Controlling nematodes on lantana from San Antonio
September 19, 2012 - Can anything be done to "fix" root knot nematode on older lantana. Next to other lantana. Pull them out or try organic fix?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center