Hey, mama! There’s a secret to keeping your garden looking gorgeous all year: evergreen low maintenance plants. These are a must-have for any landscaping project since they don’t lose their beauty, even as seasons change, and you don’t have to break a sweat caring for them, too!
But how they look isn’t the only thing you’ll love about them. These landscaping evergreens are easy to look after while serving a purpose in your garden. Whether as a privacy screen, a hedge, or a statement plant, you can find different ways of adding evergreen low-maintenance plants to your garden.
Looking for some of the best of these plants? Read on to discover them, and other things you might want to know about these evergreen plants.
Benefits of Low-Maintenance Evergreen Plants
Adding low-maintenance shrubs to your garden can bring a range of benefits that go beyond aesthetic appeal. Here are some advantages to consider when incorporating these plants into your landscaping:
Adding Year-Round Color and Texture to Your Garden
Evergreens maintain their foliage all year, keeping your garden visually pleasing even in the winter. Depending on the species, you’ll easily find them in different forms, sizes, colors, and textures. Also, these shrubs are perfect as companion plants for seasonal flowers or plants.
A Good Way to Save Time and Money
Evergreens do not lose their leaves in the fall, requiring less upkeep. This means you’ll spend less time pruning, raking leaves, and cleaning up your garden! On top of that, you’ll be happy to know that evergreens are more resistant to pests, illnesses, and harsh weather, so you can save money on pesticides, fertilizers, and replacements.
Gives You Privacy and Screens Noise
Evergreens can become physical barriers between your home and nearby homes or busy streets. They serve as a natural sound barrier, minimizing noise pollution. These plants help you enjoy your outdoor space in peace and quiet.
21 Best Evergreen Low Maintenance Plants for Any Garden
If you’re on the lookout for the best evergreen shrubs for a landscape, this list will surely help narrow down your choices…or maybe give you more options!
1. Green Velvet Boxwood
If you ask around in the plant community, you’ll find out that boxwood shrubs are some of the easiest evergreens to grow. Green velvet is one variety that is well-loved by many, and it’s easy to see why.
Other than having incredible glossy green leaves, it’s a breeze to grow. It only grows up to 3 feet in height and doesn’t need a lot of pruning. It’s versatile, too, since it’s easy to add to any garden landscape. Most people choose to use this as a low border plant or a low hedge.
The green velvet boxwood likes to grow in soil that drains well. While you may grow this under full sun, it’s best to plant it in an area with partial shade.
2. Green Gem Boxwood
The green gem boxwood is one of the most popular low-maintenance landscaping shrubs to grow and looks similar to its velvet boxwood counterpart. It’s pretty, compact, and easy to take care of. Many choose to use it as a hedge or border plant, but some also use it as an accent.
You can easily identify this boxwood species by its small leaves. Similar to other boxwoods, it has glossy, shiny green leaves. And depending on how much sun it gets, it may get bright or dark green leaves. On average, it can grow between two to three feet, but it usually grows wide with minimal maintenance.
3. Green Mountain Boxwood
Boxwoods are some of the best low-maintenance evergreen shrubs used in gardens because they’re pretty to look at and easy to take care of. The green mountain type is another variety the plant community loves, making it a popular ornamental evergreen shrub. It’s a beautiful broadleaf evergreen shrub growing only 3 to 5 feet tall.
This boxwood plant grows cone-shaped, so people use it as an accent plant in landscaped gardens for its unique structure. It looks amazing when planted behind a perennial garden bed or as an end marker for a low hedge.
If you want this type of boxwood to thrive, remember that it’s best planted in full sun. However, it’s also quite tolerant of shade.
4. Manhattan Euonymus
If you don’t have the patience, look no further than the Manhattan Euonymus. This low-maintenance evergreen shrub matures fast and can stand up to 8 feet tall. You can also let it climb walls as it can grow like vines.
This type of Euonymus is a well-loved plant used as an informal hedge, although, you can still use it as a stand-alone plant. You can also get them trimmed or trellised to make it look more kept.
The plant doesn’t need a lot of maintenance even if it’s fast growing. It thrives when planted in full sun but can tolerate some shade.
Thanks to its beautiful variegated leaves, you can easily spot this small evergreen shrub. Other than its looks, many homemakers like keeping this variety of Euonymus in their gardens because you don’t need to do a lot of maintenance. The wintercreeper is also quite flexible; you can use it as ground cover, a mounding plant, or a vine.
This small euonymus shrub has several varieties, with almost all of them having unique colors. For example, the emerald gaiety has green and white variegated leaves, while goldy has impressive yellow leaves all year round.
6. Moonglow Juniper
If you’re searching for a tall evergreen tree for your garden that can give you privacy, check out the moonglow juniper. This plant is best known for its silvery green foliage and for growing as tall as 15 feet. We love using this tall evergreen in our garden, and it’s definitely one of the most popular species around that needs little maintenance.
Besides its gorgeous foliage, this juniper has a natural shape akin to a pyramid. It’s used by many as a privacy hedge plant.
Moonglow juniper thrives in full sunlight; it doesn’t tolerate a lot of shade at all. However, it’s resilient to both cold weather and drought.
7. Sea Green Juniper
This new juniper variety has steadily risen in popularity thanks to its branches’ tendency to form an arch. Besides being low-maintenance, this type of juniper grows quickly and can stand up to 8 feet tall in just a decade.
The sea green variety of juniper trees is commonly added to a garden as a natural hedge. Many also find them fitting for a driveway or along a fence line. When it comes to looks, it’s also versatile, as it pairs well with other ornamental plants, flowering plants, and herbs.
This juniper cultivar thrives under full sunlight and is quite resilient during drought, once it’s mature enough.
8. Yew Shrubs
The yew shrubs are snow-resilient because they can survive in extremely cold temperatures. These shrubs don’t need a lot of maintenance either.
A Yew shrub is a type of conifer plant known to keep its leaves all year round. It has dense foliage made up of soft, flat needles. Because of its tolerant nature, it can grow in most conditions, including full shade. You just have to be careful not to plant this in an area where water can pool or collect.
9. Oregon Grape Holly
The Oregon grape holly is a popular low-maintenance holly variety that is an excellent addition to any garden. It’s easily recognizable thanks to its sharp red and green leaves and vibrant yellow flowers that grow into berries.
Typically, Oregon grape holly shrubs reach 5 feet high. It’s popular among pollinating insects and birds because of its pretty flowers and tasty berries.
To grow this shrub optimally, you should plant them in full sunlight. However, it can still grow in full shade.
This plant is really cute, and I enjoy caring for it. I always recommend this to close friends because it’s beginner friendly and very pretty!
10. Inkberry Shrubs
Another species of attractive, low-maintenance landscaping evergreen shrubs you can keep is inkberry shrubs. They have beautiful elliptical leaves and white flowers that first appear in spring and grow into black berries in fall.
Inkberries are slow-growing but can grow between 5 to 8 feet tall. These shrubs make great hedge, border, or container shrubs. These plants are resilient in damp soil, which helps them grow best under full sunlight.
11. Dwarf Alberta Spruce
One of the best dwarf evergreen shrubs you can get is the dwarf Alberta spruce. It has a distinct cone shape and can grow up to 8 feet tall and 4 feet wide.
Mostly used as accent trees, this compact evergreen gives a garden incredible structure. It keeps its cone shape naturally, and doesn’t need pruning. You can use these dwarf spruce trees directly in your garden, and you can grow them in large containers as well.
12. Fragrant Tea Olive
If you want an evergreen flowering shrub in your garden, the fragrant tea olive is an easy-to-grow shrub. These plants can grow up to around 10 feet tall and 8 feet wide. They grow and flower optimally under full sunlight, but can still grow with partial sunlight.
Apart from being a beautiful statement plant, it also has flowers that fill the air with a pleasant fragrance, similar to jasmine.
13. Sunshine Ligustrum
Reaching just up to 4 feet tall, the sunshine ligustrum is a low growth plant that’s commonly used in landscaping. What’s most striking about this is its incredible gold-green leaves. It’s like a ray of sunshine in your garden!
Other than its ornamental characteristics, this amazing plant is both low-maintenance and resilient. It’s resistant to mildew, plant diseases, and pests. It can also grow and thrive in a drought and in a hot climate.
14. Japanese Barberry
Many evergreen shrubs are striking and low-maintenance, making them perfect additions to your garden. Japanese barberry is one of them. I absolutely adore its wonderful red leaves, bright yellow flowers, and striking red berries. What a lovely combination!
This plant is actually low-growing, with its average height being around only 3 feet. It does grow wide, though, reaching a span of up to 8 feet. Its leaves are fantastic accent pieces for your garden, or you can use it as a border plant or unique informal hedge.
15. Perfume Princess Daphne
If you’re looking for arguably the best flowering evergreen shrub, the perfume Princess Daphne is definitely one to consider. The plant itself only grows up to 4 feet, but its main draw is its fragrant flowers that bloom for a long while.
Want your Daphne plant to thrive? This plant grows best in full sun but also needs enough water. Many use the perfume princess daphne as a foundation plant, but you may also place it in front of your house or along pathways.
16. Debutante Camelia
When I was looking for a low-maintenance plant that grew pretty pink flowers, I came across this one and have not regretted having it in my garden. Debutante camelias add so much beauty and complement the other plants I have.
This magnificent evergreen species can reach heights of 12 feet. Despite their towering height, growing it doesn’t require much maintenance.
This type of Camellia flower thrives best if it’s in an area with plenty of sunlight, but it can still live with partial shade. The flowers that look like peonies appear amidst attractive evergreen foliage in the spring.
17. Evergreen Azalea
It’s hard for me not to fall in love with pink flowers. So when I learned that there are evergreen Azaleas, I knew I had to get my hands on some of them!
Thanks to being low-maintenance flowering plants, they were perfect for landscaping our home garden with little effort. Not only is their foliage aesthetically pleasing, but there are different varieties of flower colors to choose from, too.
Commonly used as a privacy flowering hedge, these low growing evergreens can be a striking focal plant. They can also grow well in containers and are some of the easiest garden plants to grow.
18. Dwarf Mugo Pine
A dwarf evergreen you shouldn’t ignore is the Dwarf Mugo Pine. This needle evergreen grows slowly and dense, but can reach a height of 4 to 6 feet. Some low height varieties, however, can grow only up to 3 feet tall.
The dwarf mugo pine is one of the best low-maintenance evergreen varieties you can place in the front of the house or in garden beds. They create nice sight lines for your garden landscape.
19. Firethorn Shrub
This unique and striking landscaping shrub is known for its thorns and small leaves. Many also identify it by its incredible white flowers and red pomes.
If you’re looking for a low-maintenance plant you can use as a foundation plant or a privacy screen, you might want to consider the firethorn shrub! These shrubs can grow tall, reaching 15 feet in height.
They’re also fast-growing plants that thrive in full sunlight. They can grow well in different types of soils, and are a good evergreen shrub to grow for year-round interest.
20. Arp Rosemary
Save yourself the trouble of buying fresh rosemary herbs at the grocery! Instead, plant Arp Rosemary so you can pick from it anytime! Not only is this easy to maintain and attractive in a garden, but you can also use this cultivar for cooking. It’s also quite fragrant, so you can use it in bouquets and potpourri.
This rosemary plant can reach 5 feet when it matures. Grow it under full sun for best results, and do note that it is not too tolerant of partial shade. While it can grow in cold zones, it’s also sensitive to winter damage.
21. Japanese Skimmia
If you’re looking for a good broadleaf plant that provides a gorgeous look for your garden, look no further than Japanese skimmia. During spring, its beautiful white flowers bloom, and turn into red berries near the end of summer. Eye-catching and gorgeous, it’s a valuable addition to any home garden.
This versatile plant can be used in many ways for landscaping. Many people like to plant them as a low hedge, while others like to plant them in containers.
This plant is easy to take care of. All you have to remember is to plant it in constantly moist soil, and don’t place it in an area with full sun.
Evergreen Low Maintenance Plants Care Tips
Knowing the best low-maintenance evergreen plants out there is just half the battle. It’s just as essential to know how to care for them properly. Check out these tips.
Choose the right plant: The first step to caring for a low maintenance evergreen is to choose the right plant for your garden. Make sure to check out if the species you’ve chosen can grow well in your area. You can use the USDA Hardiness Zones as a reference guide to find out what species can survive the climate in your area.
Low-maintenance doesn’t mean no maintenance: The sun, soil, and water requirements of evergreens, vary depending on the plant. It’s important to keep them in the right conditions where they will thrive.
Fertilize occasionally: Evergreens benefit from occasional fertilization, but it’s important not to over-fertilize. Use a slow-release, balanced fertilizer once or twice a year, following the instructions on the package.
Garden Design Ideas for Evergreen Low Maintenance Plants
Now that you know the best low maintenance evergreen shrubs to have in your garden, here are great ideas on how to design your garden with them.
As Screens, Hedges, and Borders
Usually, dense evergreen low-maintenance shrubs and trees are used to border the entire garden or a certain part of it. As a hedge, it’s an aesthetically pleasing alternative to a wood fence, doubling as a privacy screen.
Creating Sight Lines
Other than being a border, you can use evergreens as plants that provide unique and interesting sight lines for your overall landscape.
As an Eye-Catching Focal Point
Many evergreens, especially flowering ones and those with bright foliage, can become a good statement piece in your garden.
There are many evergreen species that can also grow in containers. Some of the best species for potting include boxwoods, inkberry, and evergreen azaleas.
If you’re looking for strong, resilient evergreens to add to your garden, junipers are the go-to plants to get. They can withstand both cold weather and drought.
Another impressively resilient species is the sunshine ligustrum. Besides surviving harsh weather conditions, it’s also resistant to plant disease and pests.
If you look around during winter, you’ll probably see a lot of conifers, such as pines, fir, hemlocks, and spruces.
A Gorgeous Evergreen Garden All-Year Round
To all the busy mamas out there who want to grow plants, you can start with evergreen low maintenance plants in your garden. It’s a win-win situation because you get a head-turning garden all year round, and you don’t need to fuss about it too much when it comes to upkeep!
Which plants you choose will all boil down to a matter of preference. What are you looking for? Do you want flowering shrubs or ones you can use as a hedge? I suggest you define what you’re looking for first and then go through our list again.
More Ideas for Easy Yard Care
If you love having a beautiful yard, but also have other things you like to spend your time and energy on, search the entire library of low maintenance landscaping tips:
- Best Low-Maintenance Bushes for Your Oudoor Landscape
- Evergreen Low Maintenance Plants
- Fast Growing Low Maintenance Hedge Plants
- Low Maintenance Evergreen Climbing Plants
- Low Maintenance Evergreen Plants for Pots
- Low Maintenance Evergreen Shrubs
- Low Maintenance Landscaping Ideas
- Low Maintenance Perennials
- Low Maintenance Trees
- Must-Have Low Maintenance Shade Plants