A shrub is a small to medium-sized woody plant. It is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and shorter height, usually less than 3m and it branches out from its base. Unlike perennials, shrubs don't die down to ground level over winter. As well as adding shape and a basic structural framework to your garden, shrubs also provide shelter and a food source for wildlife. The can be evergreen (retain their leaves in winter) or deciduous (lose their leaves in winter), although there are some that lose their leaves only in very cold winter (semi-evergreen). At Chessington Garden Centre, we sell a wide variety of shrubs and below you will find an overview of caring for your shrub as well as some examples of varieties we sell.

Shrub Care

To keep shrubs healthy, productive and attractive and also to restrict their size, they often need pruning especially after a vigorous summer's growth.

Deciduous shrubs are likely to need pruning into shape, young shrubs especially often grow lots of shoots so thinning them early on is a good idea. Once deciduous shrubs lose their leaves, it is easy to see the plants overall shape and decide what needs to be cut back.

Evergreen shrubs on the other hand are fairly low maintenance and need little or no regular pruning. If pruning is required it is generally carried out in said to late spring. Pone diseased, damaged or dead shoots and thin out any crowded areas of the shrub or any badly positioned shoots which spoil the shrubs appearance.

Although shrubs don't necessarily need feeding, it is a good idea to mulch the beds with compost each year to supply your shrubs with an ample amount of nutrients.

Evergreen Shrubs

Buxus

A slow growing evergreen shrub with simple leathery leaves. Grows well in full shade and is often clipped as a formal plant or hedge.

Daphne

Popular for their intensely fragrant blooms in winter or spring, this shrub is best placed near doorways or paths to appreciate their fragrance.

Holly

This shrub thrives in full sunlight and has small white flowers in spring followed by bright red berries in autumn and winter.

Lavender

An easy to grow shrub with beautifully scented flowers which grow well in a sheltered sunny position.

Camellia

Preferring partial or full shade this popular winter and spring flowering shrub provides a splash of colour when little else is in bloom.

Mahonia

This evergreen shrub does well in full shade and produces small clusters of yellow flowers from late autumn to early spring.

Deciduous Shrubs

Hypericum

Flowering in summer with bright yellow flowers and prominent stamens, this shot) prefers full sunlight or partial shade.

Fuchsia

Often grown for their attractive pendent like flowers which bloom from summer into autumn. This shrub prefers full sun or partial shade.

Hibiscus

With large funnel-shaped flower and a long flowering season, this shrub is a popular choice for your garden.

Sambucas Nigra

A large bushy shrub with leave that turn pale yellow in autumn. This sun loving plant produced white flowers in summer, followed by small black berries.

Hydrangea

A very popular garden shrub with delicate heads of flowers in various shades. Flowering between late spring and late autumn.

Deutzia

This hardy shrub thrives in full sunlight and will produce clusters of small, white flowers during the summer months.