Finding the perfect black dress, or the perfect restaurant is not an easy thing. Fashions change, the chef may have an off-night, but the perfect evergreen shrub is an altogether easier thing to find. My perfect shrub is the rather elegant Nandina domestica, sometimes known as sacred bamboo. It’s not part of the bamboo family, but was often seen in temple gardens and does bear a slight, passing resemblance to bamboo.
- 1.5m high x 1m wide.
- It’ll grow in most places, except very wet soil.
- The sprays of small, white flowers in summer are followed by red berries in winter, and the leaves have pretty red tinges in autumn.
- Plant from late September to early March, except when the ground is either frozen or water-logged and water frequently in it’s first spring and summer.
It’s perfect for most spaces, plant it in groups for more impact in a large garden.
What’s your favourite shrub?
all photos: Jill Anderson