20 Evergreen Plants for Rock Gardens

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Rock gardens with a combination of rocks, plants and flowers is an economical technique to enrich the beauty of your backyard landscape design. In rock garden designs, a touch of evergreen foliage, the texture of which is peculiar to evergreen plants, is essential to lend the desired interest to the garden. Choosing from a list of evergreens that are extremely dwarf in character and not vigorous in their habit of growth is the first step in creating a rock garden feature.

Creeping Mahonia is a low shrub with yellow flowers, seldom more than a foot tall.
Bunchberry is a small dwarf tree with heart shaped leaves that are a deep rich green.
Juniperus Communis is a dwarf shrub with spreading branches with grayish green foliage which curve upwards near the ends.
Dwarf Rhododendron, a beautiful dwarf shrub with long dark green leaves and pink flowers.
  • Dwarf Japanese Cypress [Chamaecyparis obtusa nana] the smallest of the Japanese Cypress, rarely exceeding a foot or so in height. Very dense bright green sprays of foliage.
  • Dwarf Box [Buxus suffruticosa] A dwarf compact shrub with evergreen foliage.
  • Dwarf Golden Japanese Cypress [Chamaecyparis obtuse nana aurea] A smaller and more slender tree than the cyprus. Foliage bright golden yellow and more intense during the growing period.
  • Bunchberry [Cornus Canadensis] A small tree with heart shaped leaves, deep rich green.
  • Garland Flower [Daphne cineorum] A dwarf shrub of trailing habit, with numerous heads of small pink fragrant flowers.
  • Cornish Heath [Erica vagans] A free flowering shrub with leaves in whorls of fours and fives. Flowers of purplish red.
  • Common Juniper [Juniperus communis] A shrub with spreading branches which curve upwards near the ends. Grayish green foliage.
  • Savin Juniper [Juniperus sabina] A spreading shrub of dense foliage, very dark green, exhaling a strong odor when bruised. Excellent for rock gardens.
  • Creeping Mahonia [Mahonia repens] Resembling the Oregon grape, but of smaller size. A low shrub with yellow flowers, seldom more than a foot tall.
  • Canby’s Mountain Lover [Pachistima canbyi] Small shrub native to the Appalachians and surrounding areas.
  • Japanese Spurge [Pachysandra terminalis] A low dense evergreen plant with glossy foliage and white flowers, well adapted for covering the ground.
  • Mountain Fetterbush [Pieris floribunda] A dense evergreen shrub attaining a height of two to four feet. Dark green leaves and flowers.
  • Dwarf Mountain Pine [Pinus montana mughus] Low dwarf shrub with numerous ascending branches and leaves in bright greens and cones one to two inches long.
  • Flowering Moss [Pyxidanthera barbulata] A small creeping evergreen, leafy throughout, loosely branching; with white flowers abundant in early spring.
  • Shortia [Shortia galacifolia] A shade loving plant with evergreen foliage. Bright green leaves and white flowers.
  • Spreading English Yew [Taxus baccata repandens] Attractive ornamental evergreen yew with dark green foliage and bright scarlet berries.
  • Ground Yew [Taxus canadensis] A yew with ascending branches, slender branches of bright or yellowish green foliage.
  • Dwarf Rhododendron [Rhododendron carolinianum] A beautiful dwarf shrub with long dark green leaves and pink flowers.
  • Rusty-leaved Rhododendron [Rhododendron ferrugineum] Evergreen shrub that grows just above the tree line in the Alps, Pyrenees, Jura and northern Apennines, on acid soils. This plant has lovely deep crimson-pink flowers in June.
  • Japanese Yew [Taxus cuspidata nana] A needled non-flowering evergreen tree or multi-stemmed shrub.

 

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