Top 25 Shrubs Plants in India for a picturesque garden

Hello lovely folks!! Today we shall discuss about the shrubs plants in India. Imagine a garden filled with tall hedges with handsome foliage edged with variously patterned leaves, colourful flowers, small border plants, well-maintained topiaries, attention-grabbing plants at a corner… doesn’t it look amazing? Such an amusing garden can be created with just the shrubs. Come along, let us know more.

Shrubs plants have woody stems. Multiple branches arise from the bottom of the main stem and grow up to 6m – 8m. Some grow tall up to 10m or 15m, and some only up to 2m or less. These shrubs in India are mostly evergreen. All these plants produce flowers, some of them are bold and colourful while the others are small.

Have you heard of a shrubbery?

Shrubbery is a gardening method where the shrubs are grown in large numbers. In the 18th century, shrubberies had informally planted dense-growing shrubs and a winding pathway aiming to give a private space and a natural look. In the later years, it took a formal approach and grew in a designed way by combining with trees, blending with hedges, borders and edges along with the other components. 

Does the shrub plant in India have multiple uses?

There are different types of shrubs plants that grow in various forms and sizes. They have differences in plant height leaf size, leaf colour, flower size and colour, and flowering season etc., Let me list out a few uses of these shrubs.

  •  A single large shrub like the Dracaena or Plumeria can be grown as a specimen plant. It can be placed in a rock garden to grab the attention
  • The tall shrub can be combined with shrubs like Crotons or Scheflera to get a contrast in colour and leaf patterns
  • Smaller shrubs like Pentas or Asparagus can be planted in the borders to create a further layer to the garden
  • Thuja is an excellent shrub that can be made into a neatly maintained topiary and grown as a specimen plant
  • Shrubs plants including Duranta, Box-wood, and Texas-Sage plants are great to be grown as hedges along a pathway or in large lawns
  • Seasonal flowering shrubs in India can be grown mixedly to have colourful flowers all year around in the garden
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Shrubs in India are in abundance with various foliage patterns, colours, and enchanting flowers and some also provide medicinal benefits. Following shrubs plants names pictures in India are very commonly found and grown in all parts of the country. In addition, they are also low-maintenance plants and are easy to grow. 

Known by various names like Kaner, Karubi, Arali, and Rose Laurel, these shrubs plants are familiar to all of us. The flowers of this plant are usually offered to the lords in all temples and houses. The plant is hardy and evergreen and flowers bloom in all seasons, what makes a better option than this to the garden? The plant has narrow, dark green leaves growing densely and bold flowers in white, pink or dark red. A bright sun-lit spot, adequate watering and a warm climate are just the needs for a happy plant.

Where to use the Nerium shrub in the garden?

  • Plant it along the borders for a vibrant and natural fence
  • Grow it in front of a barren wall to mask it
  • Combine with a few smaller shrubs in a large lawn to break the monotony
Nerium 1
Nerium

Well known as the Golden Dew Drop plant, these are regularly seen shrubs in India. This makes its appearance in every large landscaped area like parks, institutions and lawns as it is hardy and easily maintained. The leaves are small and yellowish-green in colour and grow densely. The flowers and fruits of this plant are a beautiful surprise element. Petite lavender-coloured flowers arise in bunches during January and February and the small round orange-coloured fruits give a striking contrast of colour when looked at from a distance. Plant it in full sunlight and a warm place for its best growth.

Where to use the Duranta shrub in the garden?

  • Plant along the pathways and maintain a height of 2 ft for a neat look
  • Can be trimmed in different shapes as topiaries
  • Planting around large trees or specimen plants
Duranta
Duranta

To witness the alluring beauty of this shrub on a moonlit night is just an amazing experience altogether. It is commonly known as Nandiavetta, Chandnee, Nandia batalu or Crepe Jasmine and is popular in home gardens. The flowers are offered to the lords and used in making garlands and veni for hairdos. It grows to a height of up to 1.5m with glossy dark green leaves. The flowers are bright white, single or double and are borne in clusters of 3 to 5. It performs its best in a partially shady place with bright indirect sunlight and adequate watering.

Where to use the Moonbeam shrub in the garden?

  • Suitable for growing in natural shrubbery or flower beds
  • Can be grown around large trees
  • Dwarf varieties of this plant are best suited as edges along a pathway
Moonbeam
Moonbeam

We all know flowers are colourful, but do you know a plant with colourful foliage like flowers? Crotons are shrubs that have a variety of colours and patterns in their leaves. Striking shades of green, yellow, red, pink and pale white in various patterns make the plant look awesome. The plants have very small dull white inconspicuous flowers. A brightly lit spot with adequate watering is all it requires for these shrubs plants to amaze you with their colours.

Where to use the Croton shrub in the garden?

  • As a taller most layer in a shrubbery combined with bright green coloured smaller plats
  • In container gardening along with less vibrant plants
  • Two to three croton shrubs grown together as a specimen plant
Crotons
Crotons

Should stars shine only in the skies? How about we bring them down to our garden? Pentas or the Egyptian star flower are flowering shrubs in India that can bring stars to shine in your garden. It is a medium-sized shrub with rough oval shaped dense leaves. The flowers are small and tubular and the petals resemble a star. They bloom in red, pink, white and pale yellow colours. Consistently moist soil with a full sunlight area will keep the plant blooming and shining all year round.

Where to use the Pentas shrub in the garden?

  • Excellent choice for a plant bed in large lawns
  • Grown around trees as a flower bed
  • In container gardening as a filler plant
Pentas
Pentas

These plants, known for the arrangement of leaves in whorls, are commonly found in gardens of all sizes. From narrow needle-shaped to large oval shapes; solitary green to patches or dots in pale whitish-yellow, the leaves occur in various shapes and sizes and the flowers are dull and inconspicuous. They grow to a height of up to 20 feet when provided with the right conditions including indirect sunlight in plenty, consistently moist soil and high humidity. 

Where to use the Dracaena shrub in the garden?

  • Best suited for indoor container gardening
  • Grown along barren walls for masking with the dense leaf growth
  • Cordyline and Dracaena marginata species can be grown as specimen plants in rock gardens
Dracaena
Dracaena

Peacocks are handsome, bright and beautiful and so are these shrubs plants. Tall stature with branches arising from the bottom, and a rounded form of bush with delightful flowers at the top is the typical picture of this plant. The flowers are yellow, red or pink and are borne in clusters. This drought-tolerant shrub needs a full sunlight spot for its lustrous growth and blooms. It attracts butterflies and bees too!

Where to use the Peacock Flower shrub in the garden?

  • Planted along the borders as a natural fence 
  • Best suited for a natural shrubbery
  • Group planting for breaking monotony in large lawns
Peacock flower
Peacock flower

Hibiscus shrubs in India are used for various purposes like offering to God, medical uses and culinary purposes. These are densely growing bushes with bright and bold profuse flowers in various colours. A brightly lit spot, a consistent watering schedule and organic-rich manuring are all it requires for its fullest growth and profuse flowering

Where to use Hibiscus shrub in the garden?

  • Best suited as hedges along the borders
  • In flower beds along with smaller foliage plants
  • For home gardens in containers
Hibiscus
Hibiscus
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Foliage plants are no lesser than flowers in giving colour and vibrancy to the garden, especially with shrubs plants like Coleus, this can be an easy task. Coleus shrubs are medium-tall and succulent leaves in green, red and purple with many patterns. The flowers are very small and violet in colour. Most species require a part shade to full shade and consistently moist soil for its growth.

Where to use coleus shrub in the garden

  • Planted under the trees as a foliage bed
  • Can be planted as a border plant under large shrubs
  • Container gardening as a thriller
Shrubs plants in India
Coleus

These shrubs plants are unique tropical garden plants that perform their best with good attention and care. The plant has attractive broad and lengthy leaves with pretty bright red torch-like flowers. They require a warm and humid climate, full sun to partial shade and evenly moist soil. Mulching can be used to maintain a warm environment

Where to use Torch Ginger shrub in the garden?

  • Can be planted near a water feature in the garden for humidity
  • Planted under large shrubs for partial shade
  • Can be grown along the borders of a lawn
Torch ginger
Torch Ginger

Give your garden an exotic touch with this shrub plants in India. The flowers of this shrub resemble a ‘bird in flight’ with bright yellow-orange and purple colours. The leaves are broad like a small banana leaf. Give this plant a full sun and partial shade, organic-rich manuring and adequate water for its best growth.

Where to use Bird of Paradise shrub in the garden?

  • For mass planting in front of a building
  • To highlight a statue or any non-plant component in the garden
  • Grown in lawns as flower beds
Bird of paradise
Bird of Paradise

Known for its coppery reddish-coloured leaves, these shrubs plants are commonly grown in gardens both large and small. The leaves are broad and red and also occur in green colour with pale white variegations. Dull white small flowers are borne in spikes. It requires plenty of sunlight, well-drained soil and regular pruning for its happy growth.

Where to use Copper Leaf shrub in the garden?

  • As a hedge along a pathway
  • Can be grown as a natural fence
  • Combined planting with other foliage shrubs for a mass effect
Copper leaf shrub
Copper leaf shrub

Photinia is one of the stunning shrubs plants in India. The special feature of this shrub is that the young leaves of the plant are bright red and they eventually turn to a bright green. The contrasting red and green coloured leaves paint a radiant picture, especially in the morning sun. Regular pruning is required to maintain its height and form

Where to use Photinia shrub in the garden?

  • As a medium-sized hedge along the walkway
  • Grown as a tall shrub for privacy and screening
  • To mimic a tree in a terrace garden
Photinia
Photinia

You may wonder, a tree mentioned under shrubs? Yes, though it is named as bottle brush tree, it is a shrub that has multiple branches growing from the lower end of the main stem making it a shrub. These shrubs plant are known for their peculiar hairy red-coloured flowers that resemble the brush used for cleaning the bottle. Flowers bloom from spring to summer and require a full sunspot for profuse flowering.

Where to use Bottlebrush shrub in the garden?

  • As a specimen plant in the garden or lawn
  • It can be grown as a hedge providing mass coverage to taller heights
  • As a taller layer in a shrubbery
Bottle brush tree
Bottle Brush Tree

The best saved for the last! You may wonder if Plumeria is mentioned as a shrub rather than as a tree. Yes, Plumerias are also large shrubs and Plumeria pudica species are typically shrubs. These plants are grown frequently in terrace gardens to mimic a tree. With alluring and sweet-scented flowers in bright white, pink and red and glossy leaves, this shrub makes the place look heavenly. Well-drained soil, 6 hours of full sunlight and a warm temperature is all it needs for that lustrous growth.

Where to use the Plumeria shrub in the garden?

  • Best grown as a specimen tree and well suited with rockeries
  • Planted along with small edging plants in lawns
  • To mimic a tree, can be grown in large containers on balconies and terraces
Plumeria
Plumeria
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The list of shrubs in India is inexhaustive, so, let me give you the summary and other 10 shrubs names in India along with their usage in the garden.

Name of the shrubScientific NameFlowers / FoliageUsage in the garden
NeriumNerium oleanderNarrow, dark green leaves and bold flowers in white, pink or dark redAs a natural fence and against the barren wall
Duranta Duranta erectaSmall and yellowish-green in colour leaves, lavender-coloured flowers in bunchesAs hedges and topiary
MoonbeamTabernaemontana coronairaBright white flowers, single or double are borne in clustersIn flower beds and edges
CrotonsCoediaum variegatumFoliage in shades of green, yellow, red, pink and pale white in various patternsIn natural shrubbery and hedges
PentasPentas lanceolataFlowers are small and tubular in red, pink, white and pale yellow coloursIn flower beds and container gardening
DracaenaDracaena sp.Narrow needle-shaped to large oval shape leaf, solitary green to patches or dots in pale whitish-yellow colourFor indoor container gardening and mass planting
Peacock flowerCaesalpinia pulcherimaThe flowers are yellow, red or pink and are borne in clusters in round form bushAs a natural fence
HibiscusHibiscus rosasinensisBright and bold profuse flowers in shades of red, pink and whiteHedges and flower beds
ColeusColeus blumeiSucculent leaves in green, red and purple with many patterns.Border plants and container gardening
Torch GingerEtlingera elatorBroad and lengthy leaves with pretty bright red torch-like flowersNear water feature and in lawn
Bird of ParadiseStrelitzia reginaeThe flowers of this shrub resemble a ‘bird in flight’ with bright yellow-orange and purple coloursMass planting in front of building or non-plant component
Copper leaf shrubAcalypha wilkensianaLeaves are broad and red and also occur in green colour with pale white variegations.As hedge and mass planting for screening purpose
Photinia Photinia X fraseriThe young leaves of the plant are bright red and they eventually turn to a bright greenAs hedge and mimic a tree in terrace garden
Bottle Brush treeCallistemon lanceolatusPeculiar hairy red-coloured flowers that resemble a brush and small needle-like leavesAs a specimen plant
PlumeriaPlumeria sp.Alluring and sweet-scented flowers in bright white, pink and red and glossy leavesAs a specimen plant
LantanaLantana camara20 to 30 nos. of small flowers in a cluster in pink, red, orange and yellow colours with broad leaves, height up to 6ftWell-suited for flower beds and mass coverage
IxoraIxora coccineaLarge bold flowers composed of many small star-shaped flowers in bright red, pink and white colourGrown along fences, dwarf varieties as edges and container gardening
ScheffleraSchefflera arboricolaOval-shaped glossy leaves made of 6 to 12 leaflets resembling an umbrella As hedge along pathways, in flowerbeds to separate layers
TecomaTecoma stansTall bushy plant growing up to 10ft with clusters of yellow trumpet-shaped flowersThe taller layer of shrubbery, along the walls for masking
HydrangeaHydrangea macrophyllaShrubs reach a height of 3 to 5ft, having big clusters of flowers that change colour from pink to purple or blue as per soil pHBest for a flower bed in lawns
SatawariAsparagus racemosusBest known for its medicinal usage, this plant’s beautiful spiky and soft foliage adds a variety in pattern to the gardenAs edges along pathways and flower beds and as spillers in container gardening
ParijathakNyctanthes arbor-tristisLarge shrub with woody branches bearing highly fragrant small white flowers. Flowers fall when fully bloomed which is very picturesque to look atAs a specimen plant, in home gardens, temples and lawns
Ylang-YlangCananga odorataDense and wide spreading shrub with fragrant yellow coloured flowersFor mass planting and covering barren spaces
Agave Agave sp.The large, spiky and glossy leaves arranged in a whorl-like fashion along with its spike of small flowers add a wow factor to the gardenSuited for rock gardens, shrubbery gardens
FernsPteridium sp.Growing in shady and humid locations, the  exquisite leaves and small spreading habit add vibrancy to the gardenBest suited for a tropical landscape and container gardening
Other shrubs

Be it a small container that holds a single plant or acres of large land to be landscaped, shrubs plant fit in all forms. Duranta and boxwood in neatly trimmed hedges; dwarf flowering Ixora or moonbeam as edges; Plumeria or Dracenas as specimen plants grabbing the attention; hydrangeas, pentas, roses like flowers making beautiful flower beds; Parijathak’s alluring fragrance filling the space; Agave or Yucca’s adding a sudden spiky surprise… The choices are endless and the sky is the limit.

Shrubs plants, when given the basics – bright sunlight for foliage colour and flower development planted in well-drained soil with consistent watering and regular pruning to maintain their form, grow happy and healthy. 

The common shrubs plants in India are mostly compatible with each other and can be grown together easily as they all need the same needs of sunlight water soil and nutrient needs. So why wait, explore, experiment and enjoy with your favourite shrubs!

Shobanaa Krishnan
Shobanaa Krishnan
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