What type of shrubs grow best in Florida?

Florida’s options for beautiful, healthy shrubs to ingratiate your landscape are vast and diverse. Many native and non-native flowering shrubs and evergreen shrubs flourish in different parts of Florida. Native shrubs are less problematic than non-native plants. Some of these flowering shrubs include:

  • Hibiscus – Growing statewide up to fifteen feet tall, with their showy display of tropical colored flowers, some as big as dinner plates, Hibiscus spp. also attracts butterflies, are high salt-tolerant, and come in many different colors and types.
  • Camellia – Growing well in north and central Florida, you can train camelia japonica as a shrub or small tree that will grow 20 feet tall. With a low salt tolerance and the wide variety of cultivars, camellias produce many different colored blooms in the spring.
  • Princess flower – Growing best in the central and southern regions, Tibouchina urvilleana with striking purple flowers, year-round can be trained as trees reaching 15 feet in height and have a low tolerance to salt.
  • Buttonwood – Growing in central and south Florida, up to 50 feet, Conocarpus erectus, is also known as silver buttonwood. With foliage varying from silver to green with white or cream flowers produced throughout spring, they turn into reddish fruit through the summer and fall. Buttonwoods make good hedges and are salt, drought, and wind tolerant.
  • Firebush – Growing in central and south Florida, up to 20 feet tall, Hamelia patens, sports orange or red, tubular flowers year-round. Firebush attracts butterflies as well as hummingbirds.
  • Wild coffee – Growing in central and southern Florida, from 4 to 10 feet tall, Psychotria nervosa produces small, white spring flowers and reddish to purple fruits in summer that attract butterflies and various wildlife.

Non-Native Shrubs Like Florida

Because of Florida’s warm, humid climate, many non-native shrubs grow well in Florida and make good hedges. These shrubs include:


  • Awabuki viburnum – Making good screening plants, growing to 20 feet tall, Viburnum odoratissimum var. Awabuki produces small, white flowers beginning in spring and is highly drought and salt tolerant.
  • Indian hawthorn – Growing best in central and north Florida, from 2 to 10 feet tall, with a spread of up to 6 feet, Raphiolepsis indica, produces white or pink flowers year-round, depending on the type. These shrubs are salt-tolerant with medium drought resistance.
  • Selloum – Growing throughout Florida up to 12 feet high with a spread of 15 feet, Philodendron selloum, has glossy leaves with year-round green flowers and is salt and drought tolerant.


Should you have any questions regarding the best shrubs for your West Florida yard or proper maintenance of your shrubs with shrub spraying, feel free to contact Pestwise.

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