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What to Plant With Hebes – 9 Ideas

Hebes are a godsent in my garden! Because they’re versatile and dispersed over a wide range of climates, you can grow them alongside other types of plants with no trouble.

If you’re wondering what to plant with hebes, the 9 plants that I’d recommend are:

  1. Irises
  2. Lavenders
  3. Hardy geraniums
  4. Pansies
  5. Marigolds
  6. Petunias
  7. Hydrangeas
  8. Rhododendrons
  9. Viburnum

Whether you’re looking to grow perennials, annuals, or other shrubs, the list below should give you a few ideas!

Hebes growing in fine pebbles in a garden

What to Plant With Hebes: Perennials

Before deciding to plant this or that perennial with a hebe, remember to ensure that the plant matches your specific hebe’s growing requirements.

As you probably know, hebes are available in a multitude of varieties that may have slightly different light, water, and soil needs.

With that in mind, let’s explore the top three candidates to grow with your hebe shrubs!

1. Irises

The first combination we’d like to go with is irises (especially the dwarf variety) and low-mounding hebes. 

We recommend you pick “Pretty in Pink” hebes in this scenario, pairing them with pink and purple dwarf irises to give you a light-to-dark gradient of pink that’ll boost the aesthetics of your flower bed.

Besides the showy appearance of these two plants together, they’re a perfect pair because their watering schedule isn’t demanding and they both like full sun exposure. 

Plus, they’re year-round bloomers, giving you that pleasant contrast in height and amazing color harmony no matter what season it is!

2. Lavenders

Why not consider planting lavenders with your hebes? These fragrant blooms are a must in every garden for their unique elongated shape.

These flowers are also tall, making them suitable for planting behind the much-shorter hebes for an eye-catching landscape arrangement.

Additionally, lavenders love the full sun, which matches the light requirements for most types of hebes, including:

  • Hebe Great Orme
  • Hebe albicans
  • Hebe Blue Gem
  • Hebe ochracea (James Stirling)

3. Hardy Geraniums

The last perennial you could add to your hebe collection is the hardy geranium. With countless varieties and hybrids to pick from, you’re bound to find a few that blend beautifully with your hebes to create an award-worthy arrangement!

Yet, because there are many types of geraniums out there, you must be extra careful when choosing candidates to plant with hebes. 

Go for varieties that tolerate the full sun or partial shade and don’t mind planting in soil that isn’t rich with nutrients—two major requirements for most hebes.

Some hardy geranium varieties to consider include Geranium phaeum and Geranium nodosum.

What to Plant With Hebes: Annuals

If you want to grow an annual plant with your hebes instead of a perennial, check out the following three options!

1. Pansies

Pansies are hard to walk by without turning your head for a double take because of their upturned “faces” and bold shades of yellow, blue, and purple.

Because of their showy nature, they can complement the small, unassuming appearance of small hebes shrubs!

Besides, pansies are heavy feeders, so, by placing them next to hebes, you won’t have to worry about the soil being too rich for your hebes’ taste.

One thing to remember, though, is that pansies prefer cool weather.

Therefore, it’s important to pair them with hebes varieties that tolerate colder weather, such as Hebe Great Orme and Hebe rakaiensis.

Even if these two types handle winter conditions, you have to offer them some protection during cold spells.

2. Marigolds

With their yellow, gold, and orange petals, marigolds are awesome flowers to plant with hebes to give your garden a pop of color. Better still, the size of their heads depends on the variety, ranging from small single-petal flowers to larger double-petal blooms.

We also admire how they like moist, well-draining soil and full sun exposure, the same as hebes.

They’re tolerant of drought, too, not requiring much organic matter in the soil to produce fascinating flowers.

Our favorite marigold types to pair with hebes include:

  • African marigold
  • Signet marigold
  • French marigold

3. Petunias

Lastly, you can’t go wrong with petunias, which are available in every color on the spectrum except for blue. Depending on the hebe variety you’ll be pairing them with, petunias can greatly bring out the color of hebe plants effortlessly.

Their soft, trumpet-shaped blooms and attractive foliage are a joy to witness.

Plus, these pretty ladies aren’t demanding; they only need light, well-draining soil and full sun exposure.

What to Plant With Hebes: Shrubs and Small Trees

Finally, don’t hesitate to plant other shrubs or small trees with your hebes to improve the appearance of your low hedge!

1. Hydrangeas

Hydrangeas are probably the most good-looking ornamental garden plants for their distinctively large flower heads in a multitude of beautiful colors. While there are other varieties with tiny heads, those large hydrangeas can give you the best contrast with hebes.

They don’t mind any type of soil, but make sure to plant them in full or partial sun.

2. Rhododendrons

We like Rhododendrons because you can plant them in cold, temperate, warm, or hot regions. Therefore, you’re bound to find a variety that pairs well with your hebes.

Plus, they can tolerate the full sun, but they do best in dappled shade with only a couple of hours of full-sun exposure.

So, if you have a rather shadier spot behind your hebes that you aren’t sure what to plant it with, you may choose rhododendrons for this role.

With attractive shades of red, purple, pink, and yellow, we’re sure rhododendrons will add a desirable highlight to your flower bed alongside your hebes!

3. Viburnum

Last but not least, consider planting viburnum shrubs with hebes, as they’re available in many varieties that come in a wealth of color options and appearances.

For example, you can go with the Mapleleaf viburnum, which, you guessed it, features maple-like foliage.

It also has white flowers that come out in late spring, soon followed by dark berries in the summer.

Or, you may like the Linden viburnum, which is famous for the bright-red, berry-like fruits that grow all over it in the fall.

In Conclusion

Knowing what to plant with hebes is a must for all gardening enthusiasts to complement the small, delicate appearance of these plants without jeopardizing their growing conditions.

After reading our guide, you now know that irises, hydrangeas, petunias, pansies, and viburnums should work like a charm with hebes. Other plants to consider adding to your hebes garden include rhododendrons, marigolds, geraniums, and lavender.