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Some Evergreen Shrubs

Mahonia repens (Creeping Mahonia) I can never over-emphasize the importance of evergreen shrubs in the garden. Otherwise, you have nothing to look at during the winter months. Here are a few of my favorites. Talk about a carefree plant! The PNW native  Mahonia repens (Creeping Mahonia or Creeping Oregon Grape) requires nothing special and will even tolerate drought after it is established. I tend to think of this plant more as a groundcover but after many years (six to be exact - it was planted in April of 2017) it is beginning to look more like a low-growing shrub. The height is less than 2 feet tall. Growth tends to be more horizontal and it has spread 3-4 feet. Not a fast grower. Sun or part-shade. The leaves are an attractive blue-green and they become tinged with red and purple when the weather is cooler.  Flowers have been sporadic but every year they increase. It usually blooms around April - The flowers are then followed (around July) by the berries or "grapes" - Os

Japanese Silver Grass "Cabaret"

Japanese Silver Grass "Cabaret" (Miscanthus sinensis) - It flops like crazy and gets much larger than I expected. We have been very dry for the past month and need rain really bad. The ornamental grasses, however, do not seem to mind at all.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. I don't think anything fazes the big grasses. Pretty.

  2. It drives me crazy when plants flop like that! My Karley Rose grass flops after every rainfall, but quickly pops back up once it dries. But it's strictly a summer grass. The seed heads shatter and don't look like much in winter.


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