Dawn Hummel's Top Plant Recommendations: Favorite Shrubs for Oregon (Sunset zone 8, USDA zone 6).
California Lilac - Ceanothus spp.
Blue flowers are fragrant and have a baby powder scent. Evergreen, tough and very drought tolerant. Easy to prune to the ground and have come back to keep shrubs small. If let to their own devices, will quickly grow over 10 ft. Great shrub to attract beneficial insects.
Paperbush - Edgeworthia chrysantha
Large, deciduous shrub with pointed oval leaves are soft green and felted when young. Heavily fragrant flowers are bright yellow aging to creamy white. Best used in the back of a border and coupled with Helleborus 'Orientalis or other smaill evergreen perennials or shrubs to hide knobby knees.
Mexican orange blossom - Choisya ternata 'Sundance'
Evergreen, compact shrub with white, fragrant flowers in late spring, and again in late summer and autumn. Use in a mixed border, as a foundation plant, or as a specimen in a container. Foliage is great for flower arrangements.
Fothergilla major 'Mount Airy'
Deciduous shrub that grows 4-5’ tall. Profuse spring flowering, excellent fall color and upright habit. Bottlebrush-like spikes of tiny, fragrant, white flowers bloom in spring after foliage emerges. Leaves are dark green above and bluish gray beneath. Foliage turns shades of yellow, orange in fall.
Evergreen shrub or small tree Attractive foliage plant noted for its palmately lobed glossy dark green leaves lends a tropical feel to NorthWest gardens. Small creamy flowers in umbels bloom in fall. Leaves are great to use in flower arrangements.
Viburnum bodnantense 'Dawn'
Deciduous shrub that is very long-flowering and blooms right to the
tail end of winter, at least until mid-March. Pink & white cinnamon-scented blooms contrast the rugged bark. Great for mid-season flower arrangements.