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polecat63
03-16-2005, 10:54 AM
Hi all, I'm looking for an evergreen shrubs (or at least evergreen in zones 7b, 8a) that are low growing (1.5-3 feet) and have a "tropical" look. Any suggestions. They will be planted along with Hibiscus and Oleander.

BSDeality
03-16-2005, 11:27 AM
perhaps a few cultivars from Abelia x grandiflora like 'Conti' aka Variegated Glossy Abelia.

Growth habit is:
A variegated sport reaching perhaps 2' tall with a dense, compact habit. The leaves are margined white (pinkish in winter) and it bears pure white flowers in summer. Early trials indicate that this plant may lack vigor and fail in zones colder than 7.

http://www.napagarden.com/media/abelia2.jpg

polecat63
03-16-2005, 11:57 AM
I was thinking that or possibly a Deutzia.

SOMM
03-16-2005, 12:57 PM
Hmmm, "low growing, tropical looking, and evergreen" for Va. Beach, Va.

Either Magnolia or native Bamboo would keep interesting green foliage during the winter, and look more tropical than capitata Yew or Holly. Magnolia might be a pain to train to your height requirements, but native Bamboo could be sheared off to about 3 foot no problem. Considered certain varieties of Rhododendron ?

SOMM
03-16-2005, 01:17 PM
...certain viburnums could work well. White flowers in May, dark green leatherlike textured leaf.

polecat63
03-16-2005, 04:30 PM
Viburnum or a rhodo might work too. Bamboo..hmmmm. It's been my experience that if you let it go even a lttle it will take over, but it's something to consider.

treedoc1
03-16-2005, 05:31 PM
Bennet's Creek and Lancaster Farms have a hardy gardenia that will work for you.
The Lord Baltimore series perennial hardy hibiscus will also give you a big tropical look...more so than the standard hibiscus.

polecat63
03-16-2005, 07:57 PM
I'm already using the hardy hibiscus and qriginally thought to use the gardenia as well. Was also thinking of sarcococa humilis.Just looking for different ideas.

treedoc1
03-17-2005, 05:40 PM
alocasia and colacasia should be able to overwinter well for you, and give you a Fatsia look alike.
Van Bourgondien imports bulbs and has a warehouse in Chesapeake.

Mats
03-18-2005, 09:58 AM
I'm looking for an evergreen shrubs (or at least evergreen in zones 7b, 8a) that are low growing (1.5-3 feet) and have a "tropical" look. Any suggestions. They will be planted along with Hibiscus and Oleander.
Take a look at Nandinas. Harbor Dwarf and Wood's Dwarf will be 18" - 2' and Moon Bay tops out at 3'. Gulf Stream is a nice variety but at 3 -4' it might be a bit too large for you.

polecat63
03-18-2005, 04:32 PM
Decided on Abelia, Hibiscus, some elephant ears, Windmill Palms and Oleander in one area , Deutzia, Dwarf Gardenia and Hibiscus in another area of the yard and in a heavily shaded are of the lawn I'm putting hosta and painted ferns. Should look pretty good and the client is pleased with the selection. If they accept my bid I'll put up beofore and after pics.

pinson
03-19-2005, 10:32 PM
you might want to look at "mountain fire pieris". The new growth comes in with red leaves and turn green wih age .It also has small white flowers in the spring and does well in shade.