Sun Loving Shrubs for a South Facing Patio Garden: The Best Plants to Grow in Pots or Soil
There are many advantages to having a patio garden. A space for outdoor relaxation and entertainment, the patio deck is an area of unrivalled interest, especially in warm weather. In fact, if yours faces south or you live in a mild winter region, you probably use it all year round. Of course, the first thing you need to know is how to plant shrubs for a south facing patio garden so that you can enjoy it in complete tranquility.
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Our Top 5 Shrubs for a South Facing Patio Garden
Of course, most sun-loving plants are suitable for a south facing patio garden. However, some are more so than others… For example, there are exotic species which are sensitive to cold and which are better grown in pots. There are also bushes that keep their leaves in winter and plants that lose them, which is an essential feature if the neighbors are nearby. So, which shrubs for a south facing patio garden are right for which purpose?
Also read: What Ornamental Grasses to Grow in Full Sun?
Oleander for a Beautiful Sunny and Sheltered Patio Garden
Because of its long, attractive flowering period, oleander has become an absolute classic when talking about dwarf trees and shrubs for a south facing patio garden. Except in a sunny to slightly shaded location, Nerium oleander likes to be sheltered from the wind and hates excessive watering.
Bear in mind that oleanders are hardy down to around 17F/-8°C and you can plant them in soil around a patio deck, but if the frost is prolonged, they can suffer damage. So, if your sunny patio is far from the Mediterranean and the Atlantic coast, it will probably be better to place your plants in pots so that you can overwinter oleander once the cold weather arrives.
NOTE: All parts of oleander are toxic to humans and most animals!
Lavender for a Fragrant Space Free of Mosquitoes
Lavender may not be the first choice that comes to mind when you think of shrubs for a south facing patio garden, but it’s actually a very good option. Okay, this shrub doesn’t get very tall, but if privacy is not your priority, it is ideal for a sunny deck that smells of Provence and is mosquito-free in summer!
If you grow it in tall planters, you will gain quite a few centimeters to block the view towards your nook. You can also move them, although this is rarely necessary, because the hardiness of the plant is enviable. In pots or in soil, fragrant, attractive lavender likes light, chalky and well-drained soil. Like most Mediterranean plants, it is drought-resistant.
Also read: What Are the Best Plants for Full Sun Patio?
Bougainvillea: Top Shrubs for a Covered South Facing Patio
Bougainvillea is another must-have shrub for a south facing patio garden, especially if yours is covered by a pergola or other type of awning or support. You can always plant this beautiful climbing species directly around it, or grow it in large pots and containers to place on your deck.
Be aware that there is only one cultivar of bougainvillea which is relatively hardy – Violet de Meze, and even this one only tolerates temperatures around 17F/-8°C. So, when nighttime temperatures start to approach freezing, you will need to overwinter your bougainvillea, whether in pots or in the ground.
What Are the Best Evergreen Shrubs for a South Facing Patio Garden?
Do you want a natural privacy screen that will last through all seasons and withstand the cold too? Evergreen shrubs for a south facing patio garden are the perfect solution! Boxwood is a traditional choice to grow in pots or in the ground all around your south facing patio deck and it is extremely hardy too, withstanding temperatures down to -4F/-20°C! Conifers such as cypress and cedar are other representatives that preserve their foliage and love the sun.
Alternatively, the Mexican orange is a fine alternative that thrives in Mediterranean-influenced areas or regions with a clear/mild oceanic climate. Most varieties are unpretentious and can tolerate temperatures as low as 10F/-12°C, while the “Aztec Pearl” cultivar can withstand temperatures as low as 5F/-15°C. It is among the best shrubs for a south facing patio garden as well as southeast or east-facing decks.
What to grow in large pots on a deck? Herbaceous plants with perennial or annual flowers!