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Summer Blooming Shrubs

Q. I am looking for some unusual summer-blooming shrubs for my landscape. Do you have some suggestions for hardy and floriferous shrubs?

A. You can extend your season of blooming shrubs by adding any of the following to your landscape: Clethra alnifolia (summersweet) blooms in July; Cotinus coggygria (smoke tree) blooms in midsummer; Hydrangea quercifolia (oakleaf hydrangea) blooms in early summer but holds its flower heads until the fall; Itea virginica (sweetspire) blooms in midsummer; and don’t forget the constantly flowering landscape or shrub roses that can provide non-stop blossoms up until frost. Additionally, you might want to try one of the summer-flowering dieback shrubs such as Buddleja (butterfly bush), Caryopteris (bluebeard) or Vitex (chaste-tree).