Early Spring Flowering Shrubs

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FORSYTHIA
The traditional first sign of spring.  Forsythia's yellow flowers bloom along its branches before the leaves grow. This member of the olive family is extremely hardy.  Forsythia like full sun and tolerate almost any soil.  There are several varieties with varying growth habits, ranging from large 6-8’ plants to small 2’ plants. They can be grown singly or as hedgerows.

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CAMELLIAS

Camellias are an evergreen shrub with white, pink, or red flowers in March – April.  Some varieties do bloom in fall.  They like part sun (eastern exposure is ideal), acidic well drained soil, and protection from winter winds.  Most Camellias will grow 6-10’ tall.  Early blooms, fairly long bloom season, and evergreen foliage make this plant a desirable addition to the early spring garden.

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PJM RHODODENDRONS

This early flowering Rhododendron compliments any spring landscape.  Lavender-pink blooms appear in March – April.   PJM Rhododendrons prefer acidic, well drained soils. Plant in full sun – partial shade.  Small, evergreen foliage takes on a purplish- red color in fall and winter.  PJM Rhododendrons seem to be easier to grow than their larger leaf 'siblings'. 

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PIERIS JAPONICA

A broadleaf evergreen that prefers moist, acidic, well-drained soil.  Plant in partial shade.  White or pink “Lily of the Valley" type flowers appear in March, lasting through a long portion of spring.  Depending on variety, they can be 2-6’ tall.

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HEATHER

This low-growing, evergreen displays long lasting white and pink blooms in early spring.  Plant in well drained, fertile soil.

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WITCH HAZEL
Witch Hazel is one of the earliest blooming shrubs.  Fragrant, yellow or orange-red ribbon-like flowers appear in February – March.  Prefers sun or part-sun in almost any soil.  Grows 8 -12’ tall.

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PUSSY WILLOW
Pussy Willow is another traditional early flowering shrub.  White or black catkins appear in March.  Great dried flower.  Pussy willows like sun and moist soils.  They grow 6-12’ tall and wide.

A FEW OTHER SPRING BLOOMING SHRUBS:
  • Quince
  • Renaissance Spirea
  • Fragrant Viburnum
  • Weigela
  • Mock Orange
  • Scotch Broom
  • Cherry Laurel