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Fast Growing Plants For Any Garden - Rapid Growth Is A Given

Updated on January 12, 2012

Quick and Easy Landscaping

This article will cover twelve fast-growing trees, shrubs, and plants for any area of the garden. Unless you have very specific ideas on what you want for a garden and are not in a hurry to see growth, these planting suggestions will be good choices.

Different plants have different requirements when it comes to sun, soil, moisture, pruning, and pest control. I will give some general advice but before making any plant purchase, understand the climatic restrictions your area might have, and discuss with your neighborhood greenhouse staff the specific needs of the plants you choose.

The fastest growing tree is the Empress Tree. Be aware that this tree should not be planted near foundations or septic systems as the roots spread and twist. This is a tree that has lovely fragrant purple blooms in the spring, but, it can grow six feet or more in a single season so consider this tree with caution unless you have a very large lot. It can be invasive.  The tree pictured above is an empress tree.

The American Sycamore is another large fast-growing tree. It is identifiable by its pyramid shape and its yellow peeling bark. The sycamore is another good choice for shade and variety. It has large leaves, not unlike a maple. This is a tree that is comfortable in wet compacted soil.

Dogwood Trees are fast growing trees that provide wonderful displays of variegated green and cream-colored leaves. Once established they need little attention. They do not like dry soil and do best when cooled so, if possible, plant them under the shade of larger spreading trees. Dogwoods are hardy tree that produce a spring display of clustered, white or pink scented blooms.

Another Tree that grows rapidly is the Siberian Elm. An additional feature of this rapid grower is that, if you would like to have a bushy shrub instead, you merely have to trim the bush regularly as it grows.

Ground Covers that spread rapidly include Blue Catmint, which not only grows rapidly but also provides a splash of color and a pleasant scent from its aromatic leaves. Blue catmint tolerates dry conditions well. It grows to a height of about eight to twelve inches and some will provide a second blossoming if cut back.

Variegated Periwinkle is a rapidly growing ground cover suitable for both sunny and shady areas. The leaves and blooms both add color. This is a hardy perennial with green and white leaves.

Spreading Roses are another fast growing ground cover and a great protection against soil erosion with their prickly roots and branches. Throughout the growing season they provide a mass of color. Flowers range from white, through pink, peach and red. They prefer full sun.

Prostrate Juniper hugs the ground and provides year round attraction with its silvery blue leaves. It will grow in any soil conditions and is ideal for slopes.

Among fast growing shrubs, the Lilac is outstanding, with its heavenly-scented purple or white blooms. Some lilacs will grow quite tall but with careful pruning, can be kept to any height you wish. Careful pruning is essential or you will lose next years blooms.

Leyland Cypress is another shrub that grows rapidly. It needs careful pruning in order to maintain the size you want. It is attractive on its own or as a hedge. This cypress comes in shades of green, blue-green, gold, and gray.

Butterfly Bushes not only grow rapidly but supply some of the flowers that are most attractive to hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees. Every garden should have a few of these to help pollinate other garden plants and the many fruits and vegetables on which we thrive. Butterfly bushes require little maintenance and come in a variety of colors.

For fast growing flowers, I have chosen first the red-brown, gold-rimmed, Gallardia, or blanket flower. These are easy to grow and are drought tolerant. They prefer full sun, and will bloom profusely throughout the season.

Zinnias grow very rapidly from seed and provide a splash of color wherever it is needed. They are sturdy and easily grown and come in a variety of colors. If you do not want to deal with seeds, buy bedding plants from your nursery. All flowers want sun. Zinnias want a lot.

Welsh Poppies come in yellow and orange. They grow and spread rapidly and if deadheaded, will continue blooming throughout the season. In appearance they are the same as Iceland poppies. Welsh poppies seed themselves well.

There are many other fast-growing flowers, plants, and trees, which you can find with a little research. Investigate their needs before planting, and you will soon have a lush landscaped look throughout your property.


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    • Blackspaniel1 profile image


      3 years ago

      quite a list here.

    • billips profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Central Texas

      Thanks for writing Tillsontitan - nice to hear from you - regards - B.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      6 years ago from New York

      You've included some good fast growers with a nice description of each. Voted up.

    • billips profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Central Texas

      Thank you for your most flattering comment sgbrown - I too love to garden, but it is certainly time consuming - healthy work though - nice to meet you - B.

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 

      6 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      Hello billips. I love this hub! I live to garden and have just about planted more than I can take care of. I have bookmarked this hub and plan on going back to it just as soon as I can plant again this year. Excellent hub, voted up and useful. Thanks for sharing. I also liked your hub on neighborhood safety. I believe I would enjoy following you! :)

    • billips profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Central Texas

      Thanks for your kind comments Joe - I love gardening and finding just the right plant for each space - I'm no expert though -that I freely admit - I appreciate your time - B.

    • Joe Macho profile image


      6 years ago from Colorado

      Hello billips! Great hub with plenty of useful information. I'm big into agricultural crops, but have very little knowledge of shrubs and trees, so this helps out a lot. If I'm looking for fast ground cover, I always turn to the Mint family. Thanks for sharing, I appreciate it.

    • billips profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Central Texas

      Hi Happyboomernurse - thank you for taking the time to read my hub and also for commenting - if you are a nurse, you have my admiration - nurses play a vital part in all our lives - regards - B.

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 

      6 years ago from South Carolina

      Nice overview of fast growing plants and trees.

      I have Leyland Cypress trees along my property border and love them.

      Thanks for sharing this information.


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