Small evergreen flowering shrubs are an ideal choice for gardeners looking to add vibrant beauty and color to their outdoor space. With various shapes, sizes, and colors of blooms available, small evergreen flowering shrubs are perfect for small yards or gardens where space is limited.
These hardy plants require minimal maintenance, making them easy to care for and maintain. Small evergreen flowering shrubs can provide years of pleasure with their lush foliage and beautiful blooms, making them a great choice for small gardens or yards. With proper care and attention, small evergreen flowering shrubs can bring joy for many years to come.
1. Nova Zembla Rhododendron
The Nova Zembla Rhododendron (Rhododendron catawbiense ‘Nova Zembla’) is a very popular small evergreen flowering shrub. It has small, dark green foliage with small white flowers that bloom in the late spring and early summer months. This variety reaches a mature size of 5 feet tall and 5 feet wide.
This small evergreen shrub is easy to care for and can reach heights of up to 8 feet when mature. The large clusters of flowers attract pollinators and other beneficial creatures to your yard.
2. Shishi Gashira Camellia
Shishi Gashira Camellia (Camellia sasanqua ‘Shishi Gashira’) is a dwarf camellia with stunning pink flowers and glossy green leaves. It grows to a full size of 4-5 feet tall and 6-8 feet wide.
A plethora of captivating, semi-double blooms in shades of hot pink and gold with lustrous, dark green foliage. These flowers are excellent for cutting; use them to create a colorful low hedge or high-profile groundcover. This is an early to mid-season bloomer that is also evergreen.
Shishi Gashira Camellia grows best in Zones 7-10. It flowers best in partial or filtered sunlight, where it can get enough light for photosynthesis but is shielded from hot afternoon rays.
3. PJM Rhododendron
The PJM Rhododendron (Rhododendron x ‘PJM’) is another small evergreen flowering shrub that is popular among gardeners. It has small, dark green foliage and small pink flowers which bloom in the late spring and early summer months. This small evergreen shrub can reach heights of up to 4 feet when mature and requires minimal maintenance.
The small clusters of flowers attract pollinators and other beneficial creatures to your yard. It prefers cooler climates (or at least climates without overly dry and hot summers), but can be grown in both sunny and partially shaded areas.
4. Dwarf Japanese Holly
Dwarf Japanese Holly (Ilex crenata ‘Compacta’) is another low-growing evergreen flowering shrub that requires minimal maintenance. It has small, dark green foliage and small white flowers which bloom in the late spring and early summer months. These shrubs typically grow 6-8 feet tall and 6-8 feet wide.
This small evergreen shrub prefers full sun or partial shade to thrive. The small clusters of flowers attract pollinators and other beneficial creatures to your yard.
Dwarf Japanese Holly is also very drought-tolerant, making it a great choice for gardeners in drier climates. It can be grown in Zones 6-8.
5. August Beauty Gardenia
The August Beauty Gardenia shrub (Gardenia jasminoides ‘August Beauty’) is a small, flowering evergreen shrub that originates from warm climates. This plant typically reaches a mature size of 4-6 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide.
August Beauty Gardenia flowers best when planted in full sun. This warm-climate plant thrives in Zones 8-11, and is only cold-hardy down to about 20℉ (-7°C).
6. Carol Mackie Daphne
Carol Mackie Daphne (Daphne × burkwoodii ‘Carol Mackie’) is another small evergreen flowering shrub that typically reaches a mature size of 4-5 feet tall and 4-5 feet wide.
This small evergreen flowering shrub produces small pink to white flowers in the late spring and early summer months. Carol Mackie Daphne prefers full sun but can take partial shade, and is cold hardy down to -20
7. Japanese Skimmia
Japanese Skimmia (Skimmia japonica) is a slow-growing broadleaf flowering evergreen shrub. These mounded plants eventually reach a mature size of 2-5 feet tall and 3-6 feet wide.
This plant has many landscape uses, from a low hedge to a container plant. If both a female and male plant are paired, the cream-white flowers turn into festive bright red berries by late summer. These are not plants that like dry soil, however, so be sure to plant them somewhere that the soil can be kept consistently moist.
Japanese Skimmia should not be planted in full sun, and should instead be sited in partial sun (at most). This plant is quite tolerant of partial shade and even full shade, and is a great choice for a small flowering shrub in a shade garden. Japanese Skimmia thrives in Zones 7-9.
8. Perfume Princess Daphne
Perfume Princess Daphne (Daphne x ‘Perfume Princess’) is a flowering evergreen shrub known for its highly-scented and long-lasting flowers. This plant grows to a mature size of about 4 feet tall and 3 feet wide.
Daphne is best planted where it can be enjoyed. This variety blooms particularly early and for a particularly long time. It works well as a foundation planting (especially under a working window, where its fragrance can be enjoyed indoors and out). It’s also perfect beside a driveway, pathway, or entrace.
Daphne flowers best in full sun as long as the plant receives enough water. This cultivar is particularly tolerant of sunlight and heat in warmer climates, and is a good choice for a sunny spot. These shrubs are also tolerant of partial shade, and while they may not flower as much in the shade, they won’t require watering as frequently and may benefit from afternoon shade in the hottest climates. Perfume Princess Daphne can be grown in Zones 7-9.
9. Arp Rosemary
Arp Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Arp’) is a small broadleaf evergreen shrub with both landscaping and culinary appeal. These classic plants grow to a mature size of 3-5 feet tall and 2-4 feet wide.
‘Arp’ is known as a cold-hardy rosemary cultivar for landscaping. While chefs prefer specific cultivars, such as ‘Tuscan Blue’, this variety is also wonderful for cooking with and for adding to fragrant bouqets and potporries.
Arp Rosemary is best planted in full sun. The plant may become weak and thin and may not flower well if planted in partial shade. Arp Rosemary can be grown in Zones 6-10, but is susceptible to winter damage at the cooler end of this range. Winter damage may consist of dead stem tips, leaf drop, or even the death of the entire aboveground portion in a particularly cold year.
10. Soft Caress Mahonia
Soft Caress Mahonia (Mahonia eurybracteata ‘Soft Caress’) is a dwarf mahonia variety with a compact growth habit. This yellow- flowering plant grows to a mature size of 3-4 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide.
This plant works well as either a featured accent plant or in a low mass planting in a larger space. Unlike most types of Mahonia, this variety is named for its softer leaves (making it more appropriate for beside walkways than the sharp-leaved varieties).
Mahonia grows best in partial sun to partial shade. While tolerant of full shade, the plant likely will not flower well with little available sunlight for photosynthesis. This plant thrives in Zones 7-9.
11. Emerald Gaiety Euonymus
Emerald Gaiety Euonymus (Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald Gaiety’) is a broadleaf evergreen known for its variegated leaves. This low-growing mounded plant reaches a mature size of 2-4 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide.
‘Emerald Gaiety’ is often used as a foundation planting alongside a building or as a year-round interest plant in a perennial garden bed. These low-maintenance plants can also be planted en masse over a gently sloping area to cut down on mowing requirements.
Emerald Gaiety Euonymus grows best in full sun but is tolerant of partial shade and even of full shade (although the variegation likely won’t be as striking). These plants thrive in Zones 5-9.
12. Oregon Grape Holly
Oregon Grape Holly (Berberis aquifolium, syn. Mahonia aquifolium) is a native broadleaf evergreen shrub. This plant is known for its bronzed-red green leaves, bright yellow flowers, and edible berries. Oregon Grape plants reach a mature size of about 3-5 feet tall and 4-6 feet wide.
Oregon Grape is used mainly as a low-maintenance natural landscaping plant in wildlife-friendly areas. This early bloomer attracts beneficial pollinators in the springtime and birds as the berries ripen in summer and into the fall. The sharp leaves also make this plant deer resistant.
Oregon Grape Holly grows best in full sun, but can be grown in partial shade or even in full shade (although it tends to grow quite thinly in the shade). This small evergreen grows best in Zones 5-9.
13. Eternal Fragrance Daphne
Eternal Fragrance Daphne (Daphne x transatlantica ‘Eternal Fragrance’) is a broadleaved evergreen flowering shrub known for its beautiful scent. This compact variety grows to a mature size of 2-3 feet tall and 2-3 feet wide.
The floral scent of this plant makes it a good choice for along a walkway or next to an entryway. Place them around a patio or deck, where they can be fully enjoyed. They can also be massed along a gentle slope.
Daphne flowers best in full sun, but is tolerant of partial shade. This plant is slow-growing and thrives in Zones 6-9.
14. Japanese Aralia
Japanese Aralia (Fatsia japonica) is a rounded broadleaf evergreen shrub for warm climates that’s known for its large, exotic leaves and ornamental black berries. These plants usually reach a mature size of 5-8 feet tall and 5-8 feet wide.
Fatsia japonica is very versatile in the landscape. It can be used as a foundation plant, a privacy screen at the back of a perennial garden bed, or alongside a patio or pool. This evergreen flowering shrub blooms in late winter with delicate white flowers. In cool climates, Japanese Aralia can be planted in a container and moved indoors when there is the threat of frost.
Japanese Aralia should not be planted in full sun but should be sited in partial sun (at most). This plant is also tolerant of partial shade and even full shade. Japanese Aralia is a warm-climate plant and thrives in Zones 8-11.
FAQs about small evergreen flowering shrubs
What are the best small evergreen flowering shrubs for full sun?
Oregon Grape Holly (Berberis aquifolium)
Dwarf Japanese Holly (Ilex crenata ‘Compacta’)
Carol Mackie Daphne (Daphne × burkwoodii ‘Carol Mackie’)
Arp Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Arp’)
Eternal Fragrance Daphne (Daphne x transatlantica ‘Eternal Fragrance’)
What are the best small evergreen flowering shrubs for shade?
Japanese Aralia (Fatsia japonica)
Nova Zembla Rhododendron (Rhododendron catawbiense ‘Nova Zembla’)
Japanese Skimmia (Skimmia japonica)
Emerald Gaiety Euonymus (Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald Gaiety’)
What are the best small evergreen conifer shrubs for full sun?
Blue Star Juniper (Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Star’)
Bird’s Nest Spruce (Picea abies ‘Nidiformis’)
Winter Gem Boxwood (Buxus microphylla japonica ‘Winter Gem’)
Little Gem Norway Spruce (Picea abies ‘Little Gem’)
Hollywood Juniper (Juniperus chinensis ‘Torulosa’)
- Colorado State University Extension, Evergreen Shrubs
- University of Missouri Extension, Selecting Landscape Plants: Broad-leaved Evergreens
- University of Minnesota Extension, Choosing evergreens for your landscapes
- PennState Extension, Evergreen Native Plants