Easy care shrubs zone 6

Easy care shrubs zone 6

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Easy care shrubs zone 6-8 feet tall that perform best in full sun to part shade with little to no irrigation. Spring growth can be slowed and the shape of the shrub can be maintained by thinning. The shrub can be trimmed after three years, provided it still has one or two large trunks that should remain about the same size. Over pruning will lessen the desired appearance. Larger trunks should be cut off but at least 1/4 inch below the previous year’s branchlet.

Spindletree - Spindletree is a strong root stock that grows up to three feet tall and spreads outward from a central leader. The leaves are relatively thick and dark green. Leaves grow in a V formation along the trunk. Spindletree will not prune or grow cuttings for the sake of good foliage. It has an almost complete lack of leaf disease problems and is easy to prune. Spindletree trees may not be as attractive as some other plants in the landscape, but they are able to withstand drought, wind, and other environmental challenges.

Swamp White - Similar to many white varieties of Trillium, Swamp White forms a very large trunk about 10 inches in diameter. The evergreen leaves are larger than most woodland species and growing in dense swaths of foliage, the trunk is covered with grayish brown hairs. In the spring, the flowers, about the size of garden slugs, have petals that look like tiny blossoms. This is one of the most beautiful trilliums, not to mention being one of the most ornamental in the garden. It is very easy to grow and seems to be the best of the white trillium species.

White Blush - White Blush is a small, round trillium. The stalk starts to grow in the summer when the soil is moist, producing a velvety, fuzzy green. The individual stalks grow up to 3 feet high and can be from 1/2 inch to 1 foot in diameter. The leaves are borne on opposite sides of the plants and are green, but at least on this one the leaf color fades in winter.

Avery's Story - Avery's Story starts off in the spring with reddish green buds, turning into light green. After these leaves are spent, the purple flowers are produced and followed by a heavy flush of seed. Avery's Story has small, oval leaves and produces a dense, rounded, arching form. Avery’s Story grows well in many areas of the garden, particularly those with moist, rocky soil and is best in full sun to part shade. It is a “no care” trillium species. It is a miniature trillium, being only 20-25 inches high and 3-4 inches in diameter.

Indian Pipe - Indian Pipe’s perennial stalk stems can grow up to 3 feet high and is topped with clusters of white flowers that look like pipe cleaners. Leaf size is quite large and the plant has a good ability to withstand dry, hot, and windy conditions. It is better to buy the seed for this plant in January, as it tends to get rather crowded and bushy over the summer.

Swamp Bluestar - Swamp Bluestar has large green leaves that are highly ornamental. Swamp Bluestar grows well in sandy soils and does well in full sun to part shade. They are not considered to be a very vigorous, large species, but do produce large flowers. They are a good choice for a hedge or grouping. It is a no care trillium species.

Kibben's Story - Kibben’s Story grows slowly in the first season. Its branches break off and grow roots. Stems grow very slowly, requiring a second season to reach maturity. The plants have a very strong character, forming arching, upright stems to 1 foot or more, topped by long flower stems. The leaves are either oval or elliptical, and about 4 inches in diameter. The flowers are blue with darker veins and white in color. This is a “hard” trillium species.

All trilliums do best in dry, well-drained, well-amended soils with good moisture levels. They should be planted with the root exposed at the top of the planting hole. Soil should be amended with lots of compost. Care must be taken to not fertilize with high nitrogen fertilizers during the spring growing period. Many trillium species are excellent in pots, with good drainage holes and root space. Some species are available in clump form. The best success with this method has been observed with dwarf trilliums. Water well and root prune each year as needed.

Garden Rules

Trilliums need to be weeded. Do not allow the grass or weed growth to encroach on the root systems, as they will die.

Provide plenty of water and mulch, as these plants do not tolerate drought or dry conditions.

Trilliums are excellent accent plants and should be planted at the back of a border or in a shrub border.

Trilliums do best in a sunny spot. But, the best plant combinations can be found in varying directions of sun throughout the garden, and it is best to give each trillium species a choice.

It is best to prune the trillium species at the end of the growing season to reduce the size of the plant to 6-12 inches tall.

Plant trillium species in moist, well-drained, fertile soils, and in spring plant them with the top of the roots exposed.


Generally, trilliums do best in soil that is slightly acid to neutral in pH, and well drained. They require ample water to keep the soil moist. Their organic matter content should be at least 8-10 percent. Fertilize lightly in the spring, and then do not fertilize at all during the growing season.

Too much fertilizer can cause the trillium’s leaves to turn yellow.

Keep the grass and weeds away from the trillium