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Old 05-03-2010, 02:49 PM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
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We are moving to Savannah and have never gardened south of zone 5. Our new house has two lovely Japanese maples in the front, nicely defined flower beds, with pine mulch, but not a shrub or growing thing in them.

We do not want to create a maintenance nightmare, nor do we want to spend a fortune watering plants (we've always had free wellwater before).

The front faces east. The windows at the front of the house come to within a foot or two of the ground, so I was thinking of starting with two groups of 3shrubs that will remain small and do not require a lot of pruning. I mean 2 of one kind centered on either side of a different kind.

The first thing I noticed is that azaleas are everywhere, so I'm sure they would work, but truthfully, I find them a bit ubiquitous and would rather come up with some other ideas.
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Old 05-04-2010, 09:49 AM
 
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Well, first think about the time of year. You really don't want to plant anything now as it wouldn't have time to really establish a good root system before the hot weather started. Wait until late summer or early fall. By that time, you will have been able to see what works in your neighborhood. The soil around Savannah varies from loose sand to hard dried out swamp muck. Usually it is slightly to very acid. Be sure what you get works well in your area.

There are a lot of azaleas around for several good reasons. You don't need to water them, they like the acid soil, and they put on a good show in the spring. Low maintenance is a great thing in the summer.
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Old 05-04-2010, 10:33 AM
 
Location: A Yankee in northeast TN
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Popular shrubs in Memphis (zone 7) are golden euonymus, nandina, hollies, berberis, azalea, boxwood, and hinoki false cypress. Most of those would require some pruning to keep them low, except maybe the cypress. I can't really think of too many shrubs that naturally stay low, even the dwarf variety holly I planted shot up to about five feet after several years.
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Old 05-04-2010, 02:36 PM
 
Location: South Carolina
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i think you would be okay with boxwood and some cast iron plants . check those out and see what you think .
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Old 05-04-2010, 04:04 PM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
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Very good advice. Am I the only person in the world who is not crazy about azaleas? To me, they seem a little garish.
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Old 05-04-2010, 04:29 PM
 
Location: Destrehan, Louisiana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
Very good advice. Am I the only person in the world who is not crazy about azaleas? To me, they seem a little garish.

Nope, I hate and love them.

Love them when they bloom, hate them the rest of the year.

busta
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Old 05-04-2010, 04:52 PM
 
Location: A Yankee in northeast TN
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Native azaleas in a woodland setting are gorgeous. Images/Azalea_Oppenheim.jpg
I don't care for pruned or hedge look, like this, especially when the shrubs are right up against a wall and the colors clash. I have a neighbor with a magenta hedge planted against orange red bricks and I cringe to look at it sometimes.
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Old 05-05-2010, 07:56 PM
 
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Indian Hawthorne would work too. It's a slow grower, evergreen with some flowers in the spring. Japanese Yew is another one. It would have to be pruned now and then, but it should work well under the windows. It's also evergreen.
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Old 05-06-2010, 10:10 AM
 
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You have good ideas in the posts. I LOVE azaleas. I live in Texas and just moved. We just had our backyard completely redone with a wonderful landscaper designer. It is gorgeous! It is getting hot, but we just make sure it is watered well, it is growing SO FAST!

I love Lorapedulum, azaleas, spirea, hydrangea, vibernum....It is great to go to a really good nursery and talk to someone knowledgable. They can help with ideas.
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Old 05-07-2010, 06:50 AM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
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Radicans gardenia's are a nice low-growing shrub for an east-facing entryway. They add a a nice summer fragrance. Just make sure they get some protection for the hottest afternoon sun.
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