What Are Some Good Foundation Plants For In Front Of A Porch On My Home?

Filed Under: Landscaping, Design · Keywords: Good, Plants, Shrubs, Front Porch, Home Foundation, Planting, Design · 1637 Views
I know nothing of plant selection but I am trying to develop the bed in front of my home for visual attractiveness and ease of maintenance.

Would the loropetalum (pizzaz) be a good foundation plant for a landscaping bed that is in front of a porch. I read that they can grow as high as 8' to 10' but I want to have something more along the size of a shrub about 3' to 4' high and wide. (To keep it at or below the height of the porch railing). Can i keep these trimmed and shaped to remain in a smaller size or should I be looking at something else?

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Answer #2 · Gardenality.com's Answer · Regarding lower growing Loropetalum varieties for use in a home foundation planting in front of a porch, I would suggest the Purple Pixie, Purple Diamond, Emerald Snow, or Crimson Fire. I have all of these varieties growing in my own landscape now for many years. Purple Pixie is the lowest growing at 2 feet tall with a 3 foot spread, which makes it great for use under low windows or low porches. Crimson Fire has grown to about 3 feet in height with a slightly wider spread. Purple Diamond and Emerald Snow have grown to about 6 feet in height where I left them to grow naturally, but can easily be maintained at 3 to 4 feet by pruning a couple time a year. Other types of excellent foundation shrubs I might add to John's list are Dwarf Yaupon and Carissa Holly. I've used these two super-hardy holly extensively over the years in foundation planting designs. I'm trying out a new plant called Coppertone Distylium that really has a unique texture and form and many other fine attributes such as tolerance of wet or dry soils.

Carissa Holly

Dwarf Yaupon Holly


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Answer #1 · Maple Tree's Answer · Hi Dion-The Loropetalum is a real favorite shrub of mine. They definitely attract a lot of attention in the spring with their abundant flowering. All the loropetalums can be pruned to keep somewhat smaller but it is always better to plant a cultivar that grows to a mature size close to your desired size of 3 to 4 feet. This way you are not having to hard prune your shrubs every year to keep within bounds. I noted some links below to plant files of some loropetalums that you can keep easily pruned to 3 or 4 feet in height and width. Just click on the links to go directly to the plant files. Before some of the newer smaller cultivars came out I was growing the Plum Delight cultivar. I really like this cultivar although its leaves turn a little green in the summer unlike these other cultivars that hold their purple color all summer long. The cultivars I noted also have a pink colored flower like the Pizazz does. All the loropetalums are low maintenance and easily grown. There are many plants that work well as foundation plants but your hardiness zone and amount of sunlight will both be a factor in what plants will do well in the area you are planting. Do you know what hardiness zone you are located in? This will determine what plants will survive in your location. You can click on Hardiness zones in the upper right corner of any page in Gardenality to find your zone or give me your city and state and I can look it up also.

Other foundation shrubs I like to use along with the loropetalums if space permits is the Indian Hawthorn, Wheeler's Dwarf Pittosporum, Emeral-N- Gold Euonymus, and the nandinas (Heavenly Bamboo). The contrasting leaf shapes and leaf coloring all year long adds nice interest to a garden with possibly small flowering annuals planted around them for even more color at times of the year. Again your hardiness zone will determine whether these and other plants can be used in your location. I uploaded a picture of a small garden of mine to give you a look at the nice contrast of leaf shapes and their coloring using the nandinas, Wheeler's Dwarf Pittosporums, and the loropetalums.












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