Shrubs don't have to fade into the background – there are plenty of magnificent species and cultivars of shrubs for April flowers, with colourful, scented and wildlife-friendly flowers.
When choosing your shrub, it's a good idea to take in to account the eventual size it'll reach, so you can choose the most suitable location and avoid having to move it.
Discover five spectacular shrubs for April flowers, below.
Robust and reliable, the Japanese quince (Chaenomeles japonica) has irresistible blooms, which look stunning in contrast with the dark, bare stems. They'll bloom from March to May, and there are some fantastic cultivars to grow, including the crimson-flowered 'Nicoline' and the white-flowered 'Nivalis'.
Known as lily of valley bush, pieris produce clusters of bell-shaped flowers, which vary in colour depending on the cultivar you're growing. 'Purity' has crisp white flowers, while those of 'Passion' are a rich shade of pink. When planting, be sure to do so in acid soil or ericaceous compost.
While known as winter hazel, the attractive butter yellow flowers of this shrub generally appear in spring, from March to April. Not only do the flowers make for a dazzling effect when open, but they're sweetly scented, too. If you're after scent in April, here are five fragranced plants for April to grow.
California lilacs (Ceanothus) are well-known for the masses of intensely blue flowers produced in April, May and June. It's a great plant for a wildlife garden, as it will attract bees, butterflies and other pollinators. Plus, with the right variety and training, they can form a floriferous and highly attractive small tree.
Ribes x beatonii
Ribes x beatonii is a free-flowering shrub, with flower buds that turn from ruby red to orange-yellow as they open. The leaves release a pleasant aroma when crushed and are flushed with an attractive purple undertone when young. You could also try growing another flowering currant, such as Ribes odoratum.