Best White Flowering Shrubs for Landscaping

Photo of white flowering shrubs for planting in the garden

White flowering shrubs are often carefully planted throughout the flower garden by wise gardeners because they make the colors of all the other flowering plants even more vibrant in contrast. White shrubs also add a certain elegance to any landscape. They look particularly beautiful when paired with white fencing. Below, find some of the best white flowering shrubs for your garden.


There are many great varieties of white azaleas. Depending on the variety, the azalea blooms in early or late spring. Some varieties also bloom in the summer and fall, although those are more rare.

Depending on the variety, azaleas do best in USDA zones 3 to 9 in acidic soil. Again, depending on the variety, azaleas grow in both full shade and full sun. The shade loving variety work great for woodland gardens. In addition, azaleas are also often used as showy foundation plants.

Butterfly Bush

As its name implies, the butterfly bush is great for attracting butterflies to your garden. While best known for its purple blooms, the butterfly bush is also among the white flowering shrubs. It blooms in late summer and is prized for its large scented clusters of flowers one to two feet in length.

Some varieties are invasive, so check with your local nursery for information for the best plants for your area. All varieties prefer full sun and well-drained soil. Remove spent blooms to encourage new blooms. The butterfly bush does best in zones 5 to 10. These bushes typically reach a height between 4 and 8 feet.


The white camellia shrub produces pale white flowers with unusual overlapping petals. They are a bit finicky and are not tolerant of extreme heat or cold. For that reason, they grow best in zones 8 to 10. Camellias thrive in acidic well-drained soil. The Gardening Know How website suggests a soil with a pH between 6 and 6.5. Camellias also need a shady location with dappled sunshine. Direct sunlight is too harsh.

The blossoms are somewhat similar to roses and varieties are also available in yellow, pink and red. The blooms are long lasting and, because of this, camellias are often used as foundation plants.

Dwarf Deutzia

These white flowering shrubs are so small that they work great as a groundcover. The plant reaches a height of 2 feet tall and 5 feet wide. It blooms in late spring on arching stems. If grown in full sun, this plant will reward you with white blossoms in the spring and attractive fall foliage as the growing season comes to a close. The duetzia grows best in moist, well-drained soil in zones 5 to 8.


Hydrangeas are among the favorite of white flowering shrubs. With large and showy blooms, the hydrangea is a great addition to almost any garden. One of the best hydrangeas for white blooms is the Annabelle hydrangea. The large white blossoms last from early summer through autumn.

Hydrangeas thrive in a location that receives morning sun and light afternoon shade. They do best in zones 3 to 7, depending on the variety. They are great choices for woodland gardens or specimen plants.


There are many varieties of viburnum shrubs, but one of the most popular for its white flowers is the Korean spice viburnum. It grows to about 5 feet tall and wide, but can grow larger under ideal growing conditions. A nice bonus, these white flowering shrubs have a unique and enjoyable spicy scent. As a result, the Korean spice viburnum is often planted under a window where the scent can be enjoyed inside the home.

Viburnums enjoy a slightly acidic soil in full sun to part shade. Viburnums grow to as large as 30 feet, depending on the variety. The plant grows best in USDA zones 4 to 7. It is often planted near the house where the unique aroma can be enjoyed.

Japanese Andromeda

Also called Pieris japonica, Japanese pieris, andromeda, or lily-of-the-valley shrub, this plant is native to eastern China, Taiwan, and Japan. It is a spring flowering plant with tiny fragrant tiny bell-shaped flowers and dark green foliage. Like the lily-of-the-valley flower, the strong scent of the andromeda is not for everyone. You either love it or hate it.

Andromeda grows best in zones 5 to 8 in full sun to part shade. If grown in too much shade, the blooms will be greatly reduced. The plant also prefers a slightly acidic soil. There is a great variation in size from 3 to 10 feet tall, depending on variety.


Growing up in the Midwest, the fragrant lilac bush was a familiar and welcome sight every spring. These huge bushes full of big lavender, purple, or white fragrant blooms are a favorite source for kids to pick bouquets for mom, and I was no exception. The relatively long lasting blooms are great as cut flowers on the kitchen counter in a simple vase.

Lilacs bloom in the spring and do best in zones 3 to 8. They need well-drained soil in a sunny location to bloom well. Lilacs range in size from 4 to 15 feet tall. The larger varieties of these white flowering shrubs make great privacy hedges. They are also great for attracting pollinators to your garden.


The word magnolia evokes the image of a massive southern tree with leathery leaves and fragrant white blossoms. However, there are also many varieties of the magnolia, including those that grow in the shape of a shrub. No matter what the variety, all have beautiful flowers and many are fragrant. Magnolias grow best in full sun to light shade in slightly acidic soil.

There is a huge range in size, depending on the variety. Also, depending on variety, the magnolia grows in USDA zones 4 to 9. The blooms have a wonderful and unique fragrance and the blossom are very pretty. Therefore, the magnolia is often used as a front yard specimen plant.

Mock Orange

This lovely shrub has a relatively short blooming period of about two weeks but many gardeners feel the lovely blooms outweigh the negative of the short bloom time. After blooming, the dark green foliage is attractive in itself. The blooms are similar in shape to the rose but more rounded. What makes this flowering shrub so popular is its unique aroma with a slightly citrus scent.

This is a large shrub and grows to a height of about 10 to 12 feet. The mock orange grows best in full sun to partial shade in moist soil. For this reason, the mock orange benefits from a layer of mulch. It is best suited to USDA zones 4 to 8.


The popular potentilla is also called shrubby cinquefoil or bush cinquefoil. This low-maintenance plant is a popular shrub for landscaping. It is quite tough and tolerant of cold weather and even salt air, making it a good choice for coastal areas. Potentilla is also available in yellow flowering varieties and does best in well-drained soil. It thrives in USDA zones 2 to 7 in full sun. Most varieties grow between 1 to 4 feet tall and wide.

They work great as hedges, on slopes, and at the back of borders. Pollinators are also drawn to them. The potentilla is a great choice if you are looking for versatile white flowering shrubs that are easy to maintain.

Rose bush

When most people think of a rose, they think of the typical red rose. Fortunately, roses are available in a wide variety of colors, including white. Roses grow on woody thorny stems and most are fragrant. The modern versions are much easier to grow than the older varieties. As a result, they are very popular. Popular varieties like the Knock Out roses bloom throughout the season, require little maintenance, and are resistant to disease. Like all roses, they look great in mass plantings, borders, cottage gardens, and when mixed with perennial flowers.

Rose bushes do best in moist soil and full sun. They do not do well in heavy clay soil or wet conditions. Depending on the variety, they range from 3 to 6 feet tall and do best in USDA zones 3 to 9.

Snows of Kilimanjaro

Despite its name, the Snows of Kilimanjaro shrub is tropical in nature and does best in USDA zones 10 to 13. It grows to an impressive 6 to 10 feet tall with a spread of 4 to 6 feet. It is known by many other names including little Christmas flower, white lace euphorbia, and snow bush. The flowers have a sweet fragrance. The plant thrives in full sun with minimal shade and well-drained soil.


The spirea shrub blooms in tiny white flowers with a yellow center. It grows 5 to 8 feet tall and in zones 3 to 8. One of the most popular spireas with white blooms is the Vanhoutte Spirea.

Spireas grow best in moist well-draining soil. They bloom in early summer and are fairly drought tolerant once established. For this reason, keep young plants well mulched until established.

Landscaping with White Flowering Shrubs

White flowering shrubs are used for landscaping in a variety of ways. White shrubs planted along a white picket fence is always a great combination. Adding white to any color makes that color more vibrant. Consequently, white flowering shrubs are often planted near flower beds for a nice contrast. Planting white shrubs is also an easy way to brighten up any dark area of your garden. White shrubs also make a great choice for borders because they act as a backdrop for all of your other plants.

Related posts:

  • Popular Yellow Flowering Shrubs
  • Different Types of Hydrangeas
  • Azalea Pruning and Care
  • Flowers That Attract Bees to Your Garden
The Best White Flowering Shrubs for Landscaping
Best White Flowering Shrubs for Landscaping