The 6 Best Bushes To Plant In Front Of Your House

One thing many homeowners hate to see when designing the landscape outside their home is exposed foundation. There are various ways to hide it, from adding lattice to slapping on a coat of paint. However, landscaping professionals, such as New Roots Landscaping, agree that you should never cover up your foundation as it can lead to trapped moisture and cause problems down the road. Instead, you should consider planting bushes in front of your home's foundation to hide the concrete and beautify your front yard at the same time.

There are several great options for this project, from large camellia bushes to smaller boxwood shrubs, we're sure you'll find the bush that fits your needs. Most medium-sized bushes like the five in our list are suitable for many different climates. They're also relatively neglect-tolerant and will do wonders in making the front of your home much more welcoming to guests.

Rose bushes

In general, the best kind of rose bushes you can plant outside your home are known as shrub roses or the floribunda rose — a hybrid between two other roses: polyantha (Rosa multiflora) and hybrid tea. As described by Jacksons Nurseries, floribunda rose bushes are bushy, stiff, and covered in clusters of flowers that show off fragrant, ruffled petals. The large flowers, which are often about 4 inches across, bloom from summer until fall when the bush is cared for properly.

Caring for floribunda roses is not too difficult. As per Midwest Gardening, the most important aspects to consider are sunlight, soil, and fertilization. These bushes, which are hardy to USDA zones 5 through 10, must have access to several hours of full sun daily. However, they also need protection from the wind. This is why they're such a good landscape rose for planting in front of your home.

Your rose bush will succeed if you plant it in rich, fertile, and well-drained soil. Keep in mind that floribunda roses also need plenty of moisture, so you'll want to set up a regular watering schedule. And, while you're at it, you can also set up a fertilization schedule, where you plan to feed your roses twice per year.

Azalea bushes

Azaleas (Rhododendron spp.) are a popular option due to their adaptive nature and ability to grow in USDA hardiness zones 5 through 9, as noted by Monrovia. Within the Rhododendron genus, there are more than 1,000 species that vary in size, color, bloom time, and care requirements. Depending on where you live, one Rhododendron will be better for your front lawn compared to another.

Before choosing your favorite, consider the place where you plan to grow yours. Azaleas enjoy partially shady spots with well-drained, organic soil that's not burdened with excess moisture, per Clemson's Home & Garden Information Center. When this plant is grown in soggy soil, it'll become more susceptible to diseases like root rot.

Fertilizer can be another important factor when growing azaleas. These bushes need plenty of nutrients to grow, but most of them can be introduced through its soil when the plant is young. You should only fertilize your azalea bushes when they show signs of nutrient deficiency such as yellowing leaves or a slow growth rate. When this happens, you can apply liquid fertilizer at the base of your plant during its growing season.

Boxwood shrubs

Boxwood shrubs (Buxus spp.) are known for their evergreen foliage and bushy growth habit. These popular landscape plants can be pruned into visually pleasing shapes such as spheres and rectangles, as shown by Total Landscape Care. Within the Buxus genus, there are at least 70 distinct species, but the most common species used in landscaping in the United States is the English boxwood or Buxus sempervirens.

This broadleaf evergreen is hardy to USDA growing zones 5 through 8, and it can grow in a variety of light conditions, per the Missouri Botanical Garden. When you provide your boxwood shrub with the right sort of care, it may grow up to 15 feet tall and wide. However, with diligent pruning, you can be certain that it stays the shape you prefer. When planting a shrub like this, you must grow it in well-draining, loamy soil where it won't be harmed by harsh winds or hot afternoon sun. Water it regularly and feed it balanced fertilizer in the late fall or early spring.

Camellia bushes

Camellia bushes (Camellia sasanqua) can be identified by their showstopping flowers, pleasant fragrance, and evergreen foliage (via Monrovia). There are many camellia species, however, this one, in particular, works well as a foundation plant in front of your home. Camellia sasanqua typically grows between 2 and 12 feet tall. Of course, it's unlikely that you would want a 12-foot tree in front of your living room window, but many cultivars in this species grow much smaller, such as the "Jean May" camellia or the "Plantation Pink" camellia.

According to the North Carolina Extension Gardener Plant Toolbox, the sasanqua species works well with other shrubs planted in your garden as their leaves are smaller and not very coarse. In order to successfully grow a blooming camellia bush, you will need to plant yours in acidic, well-drained, and organically rich soil. Adding a layer of mulch on top of the bush's roots will ensure it receives protection from the cold and plenty of nutrients. This landscape shrub also needs a protected, shady area. These bushes cannot tolerate full sun conditions or harsh winds.

Hydrangea bushes

Hydrangea bushes (Hydrangea paniculata) can be used in many ways on your lawn. They can be grown into trees, made into a focal point in your garden, or trained into hedges that line the front of your home. As noted by the North Carolina Extension Gardener Plant Toolbox, this particular species is recognized as one of the best hydrangea bushes to plant in colder regions of the U.S. It's hardy to USDA zones 4 through 8, and it can tolerate air pollution that's common in urban environments.

This multi-stemmed deciduous shrub won't need to be planted in any special soil, just be sure that it's well-draining but still moist. As per Miracle-Gro, you must consider water when planting hydrangeas; compared to other bushes, they require much more frequent watering, especially during the summer months. Their soil should be consistently moist. Furthermore, regular fertilization will also help your hydrangea bushes reach their full potential. Try to feed yours twice per year: once during the early spring and again later on in the summer.

Lavender bushes

Lavender (L. officinalis) is an excellent and low-growing shrub that will add a delightful scent to your yard. Even better, lavender is a fast grower, so if your plants seem a bit sparse for the first year, they'll fill out once they've become more established.

If you want to cultivate lavender in your flower beds, West Coast Seeds says to plant them in warm soil and start them as sprouts. Don't crowd them too much with mulch, as they don't like overly wet soil, which can cause root rot. Additionally, there are several different types of lavender; English lavender does well in USDA zone 5, for example, while Spanish lavender can thrive in zones 7 to 9. 

The Pioneer Woman suggests pruning your lavender in the spring (rather than in the fall) the moment that you notice new growth. It does take some time before leaves start popping up, but you'll be rewarded for your patience.