Compatible Trees and Shrubs

Low-growing trees, shrubs and other plants can be compatible with TVA right of way easements—here is a comprehensive list of acceptable plants, including botanical and common names, as well as attributes.

Scientific NameCommon NameNative Species?Cultivars Available?Evergreen or Deciduous?Comments
Abelia X grandiflora Glossy Abelia No Yes Deciduous Easy to grow and tolerant of many habitats; white-pink flowers
Aesculus parviflora Bottlebrush Buckeye Yes No Deciduous Multi-stem, colony-forming shrub with large spikes of white flowers
Buxus microphylla Littleleaf Boxwood No Yes Evergreen Easily shaped with pruning
Buxus sempervirens Common Boxwood No Yes Evergreen Easily shaped with pruning
Callicarpa  japonica Japanese Beautyberry No Yes Deciduous Multi-stem shrub producing showy berries
Callicarpa americana American Beautyberry Yes Yes Deciduous Multi-stem shrub producing showy berries
Calycanthus floridus Sweetshrub Yes Yes Deciduous Maroon-red sweet-scented flowers
Chaenomeles speciosa Flowering Quince No Yes Deciduous Flowers ranging from red to white; rounded form with spiny twigs
Clethra alnifolia Sweet Pepperbush Yes Yes Deciduous Fragrant, with long flower spikes
Cornus sericea Red Osier Dogwood Yes Yes Deciduous Multi-stem shrub with showy bark
Cotinus coggygria Smokebush No Yes Deciduous Many with red-purple foliage, airy flowers, good fall color
Forsythia X intermedia Forsythia No Yes Deciduous Showy yellow flowers in early spring
Fothergilla gardenii Dwarf Fothergilla Yes Yes Deciduous 2 to 3 ft. tall, white flowers in spring with good fall color
Fothergilla major Large Fothergilla Yes Yes Deciduous To 10 ft. tall, white flowers in spring with good fall color
Hamamelis vernalis Vernal Witch Hazel Yes Yes Deciduous Flowers from late winter to early spring; good screen and fall color
Hibiscus syriacus Rose of Sharon No Yes Deciduous Summer flowering; good for borders
Hydrangea arborescens Smooth Hydrangea Yes Yes Deciduous Many cultivated varieties available, white flowers
Hydrangea macrophylla Bigleaf Hydrangea No Yes Deciduous Rounded shrub with large, showy flowers
Hydrangea quercifolia Oakleaf Hydrangea Yes Yes Deciduous Attractive exfoliating bark and showy flowers
Hypericum spp. Shrubby St. Johnswort In Part Yes Deciduous Multiple species; groundcovers and shrubs with large, yellow flowers
Ilex crenata Japanese Holly No Yes Evergreen Attractive berries, numerous cultivated, low-growing varieties
Ilex glabra Inkberry Yes Yes Evergreen Attractive berries, numerous cultivated, low-growing varieties
Ilex verticillata Common Winterberry Yes Yes Deciduous Showy red fruit in winter; Ilex verticillata X  serrata hybrids are also ornamental
Illicium floridanum Florida Anisetree Yes Yes Evergreen Rare in the wild; attractive red flowers, prefers part sun to shade
Itea virginica Virginia Sweetspire Yes Yes Variable Ranging from deciduous to evergreen; attractive white flowers
Juniperus horizontalis Creeping Juniper Yes Yes Evergreen Low-growing, sprawling shrub; good ground cover
Kalmia latifolia Mountain Laurel Yes Yes Evergreen Attractive flowers, numerous cultivated, low-growing varieties
Leucothoe spp. Fetterbush, Dog-hobble In Part Yes Evergreen Multiple species; low-growing shrub with lustrous foliage
Lindera benzoin Spicebush Yes Yes Deciduous Nice flowers, fruit; good for wetter areas
Loropetalum chinense Chinese Fringe-flower No Yes Evergreen Shrub with attractive flowers, choose low-growing varieties
Neviusia alabamensis Alabama Snow-wreath Yes No Deciduous Rare in the wild with showy white flowers in spring; colonial, good for borders
Philadelphus inodorus Mock Orange Yes No Deciduous Shrub with rounded form and white flowers
Physocarpus opulifolius Common Ninebark Yes Yes Deciduous Exfoliating bark on older stems, good for borders; cultivated varieties are superior
Pieris floribunda Mountain Pieris Yes No Evergreen Native, attractive low-growing shrub
Pieris japonica Japanese Pieris No Yes Evergreen Attractive foliage and flowers; good for borders
Prunus laurocerasus Cherry Laurel No Yes Evergreen Multi-stemmed, numerous cultivated, low-growing varieties
Rhododendron carolinianum Carolina Rhododendron Yes Yes Evergreen Showy flowers; prefers good drainage and some shade
Rhododendron catawbiense Catawaba Rhododendron Yes Yes Evergreen Showy flowers; prefers good drainage and some shade
Rhododendron spp. Azalea In Part Yes Deciduous Showy flowers, some repeat blooming; choose low-growing varieties
Rhus aromatica Fragrant Sumac Yes Yes Deciduous Spreading shrub with red berries; leaves fragrant when crushed
Rosa spp. Rose In Part Yes Deciduous Multiple species with numerous cultivars; grown for the attractive flowers
Styrax americanus American Snowbell Yes No Deciduous Bell-shaped white flowers in early summer
Syringa spp. Common Lilac No Yes Deciduous Aromatic flowers, numerous cultivated, low-growing varieties
Vaccinium spp. Blueberry Yes Yes Deciduous Fantastic edible, good fall color, requires acidic soil
Viburnum spp. Viburnum In Part Yes Variable Attractive flowers, numerous cultivated, low-growing varieties
Weigela florida Weigela No Yes Deciduous Large, adaptable shrub with arching branches; appropriate for borders