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Landscaping Ideas for Green Decor

by Karen Lawson, All About Lawns Columnist

Landscaping with colorful plants can provide decorative displays both indoors and out. Here are some shrubs that can provide some great landscaping color, as well as attractive materials for indoor use.

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Colorful Landscaping Shrubs

Pyracantha or Fire Thorn (Pyracantha) USDA hardiness zones 5-9

This rapidly growing shrub has narrow dark green leaves and produces clusters of small white flowers during spring. The flowers mature to orange or red berries in the fall. Sprays of berries can be used in indoor arrangements, but they should last through late winter if left on the bush. Birds enjoy eating the berries, and planting pyracantha within view of a window can provide a show display of berries visited by birds including robins, mockingbirds, and waxwings. Pyracantha has sharp thorns, so use care when handling. These shrubs prefer full to part sun and well drained soil.

Redleaf (Japanese) Barberry (Berberis) USDA hardiness zones 5-8

These compact shrubs present scarlet to burgundy leaves that turn to orange and bronze during fall and winter. Although they have small red berries, they're typically highly desired for their brilliant foliage color. Barberry can add contrast to a predominantly green landscape, and traditionally require little care. Barberry bushes have sharp thorns--handle them with care!

Fragrance

Lavender (Lavendula) USDA hardiness zones 5-11

Lavenders are perhaps most popular for producing fragrance. Divided into English and French categories, genus lavendula typically produces silvery foliage highlighted with purple, blue, pink, yellow,or white flower spikes. Flowers can be dried and used for potpourri, dried floral arrangements, or mixed with herbs for culinary use. Lavender typically requires well drained soil, and prefers soil pH within the range of 6.5 to 7.5. The variety of colors, growth habit and fragrance ensure lavender's popularity.for container gardening and landscaping.

Incorporating colorful plants and shrubs into both your indoor and outdoor design ideas can create a vibrant feeling throughout your house and yard.

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About the Author
Karen Lawson is a freelance writer with an avid interest in gardening and horticulture. She earned BA and MA degrees in English from the University of Nevada, Reno.

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