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Best Foundation Plants for Your Home: Stonecrop, Catmint, Hosta (2023)

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foundation plants for around your homeDo you ever look at the front of your house and wish it had more visual interest? You might be surprised to learn that a few strategic foundation plants can make all the difference. We’ve rounded up ten of our favorite perennials and shrubs, like Stonecrop, Catmint, Hosta and even Ornamental Onion – perfect for adding beauty to your home’s exterior.

Key Takeaways

  • Foundation plants enhance the curb appeal of your home’s exterior.
  • There are various types of foundation plants, including perennials and shrubs, each offering unique benefits.
  • Popular perennial choices include ‘Pure Joy’ sedum, catmint, and Hosta ‘Wheee!’ for their low maintenance and season-long interest.
  • Recommended shrubs for your home’s front include ‘Serendipity’ allium, Tater Tot arborvitae, juniper, Little Lime hydrangea, ‘Prairie Winds’ switchgrass, Soft Serve and Pinpoint false cypress, and rose of Sharon from the Chiffon series. They offer multi-season beauty, dimension, and structure.


For your home’s foundation, try ‘Pure Joy’ stonecrop. Its succulent foliage thrives with minimal care and attracts pollinators. This creeping perennial sedum is a stellar choice for the areas around your home requiring minimal maintenance.

With its tight mounds of fleshy bright yellow leaves, ‘Pure Joy’ delivers year-round curb appeal and drought tolerance.

Simply plant in full sun, provide well-drained soil, and you’ll be rewarded with a tough yet eye-catching groundcover. As an added bonus, the cheerful yellow blooms of this sedum attract pollinators like bees and butterflies.

Whether massed along walkways or nestled in rock gardens, this carefree perennial transforms barren spaces into vibrant bursts of color.

For an easy-care foundation plant that handles heat and dry conditions with aplomb, go for ‘Pure Joy’ sedum.


Amid the asters and alliums, add arresting and aromatic cat’s pajamas catmint at your abode. This carefree perennial thrives in full sun and poor soil while withstanding heat and drought once established.

Its gray-green foliage and spires of lavender-blue flowers bloom spring through fall, attracting pollinators. Mounding varieties like Walker’s Low grow 12-18 inches tall while Nepeta Cat’s Pajamas reaches 3 feet.

Catmints prefer well-drained soil and need minimal fertilization. Prune spent flowers to encourage reblooming. Catmint pairs nicely with roses, peonies, and Russian sage. Whether you seek a groundcover, border plant, or specimen shrub, catmint’s low-maintenance nature and delicate blossoms add year-round curb appeal as a foundation plant.


You’ll love how the Shadowland ‘Wheee!’ hosta brightens up those shady spots by your door with its unique yellow and green variegated foliage.

  • Plant in organic, fertile soil amended with compost.
  • Water hostas regularly until established, then infrequently except in drought.
  • Divide congested clumps in early spring or late fall.

The ‘Wheee!’ hosta is a dwarf variety under 1 foot tall, perfect for edging walkways or planting in containers. Its lemon-yellow leaves edged in dark green make a striking statement when paired with purple leafed coral bells or astilbe.

For pest control, apply neem oil or insecticidal soap preventatively. With the right care, hostas thrive for years, offering reliable color and texture even in problem areas.

Ornamental Onion

Ornamental Onion
Add ‘Serendipity’ Allium for purple flowers that are easy to grow in full sun. This ornamental onion offers vibrant spherical blooms on sturdy stalks, perfect for the front of the house.

Plant the bulbs in fall at least 6 inches deep and 10-12 inches apart. The blooms will arrive in late spring to early summer. ‘Serendipity’ grows 12-15 inches tall, ideal for foundation beds. Pair it with other sun-loving perennials like catmint or yarrow.

Allium adds unique shape and texture to the landscape. Best of all, it has few pests, self-sows, and naturalizes over time with little care.

For other color options, look for Allium ‘Millenium’ or ‘Globemaster.’ A ring of ornamental onion bulbs makes a lovely addition to any home.

Globe Arborvitae

Globe Arborvitae
Step up to the house with Tater Tot globe arborvitae, a cute and colorful dwarf that livens up foundations.

  1. Its naturally globe-shaped form needs minimal trimming.
  2. Dense foliage comes in bluish-green, chartreuse, or golden hues.
  3. This tough evergreen handles sun, shade, heat, and cold.

Add structure and greenery around entryways and windows with Tater Tot. The petite globe arborvitae grows just 3-4 feet tall and wide, staying trim and tidy without constant shearing. It’s adaptable too, thriving in zones 3-7 and a range of soil types, only needing occasional watering once established.

For maximum curb appeal, use Tater Tot as an easy-care foundation plant. The cheery globe form contrasts beautifully with spiky ornamental grasses, adds symmetry flanking doorways, and provides year-round color when paired with deciduous shrubs.


Juniper is a tough and low maintenance native shrub perfect for curb appeal and withstanding various conditions around your home. With over 50 species available, junipers offer great diversity to showcase year-round.

For example, the TortugaTM Juniper communis is an ideal compact cultivar perfect for foundation plantings, with soft green foliage that turns purplish in cold weather.

Junipers require little care, just occasional pruning in spring to shape as needed and keep growth under control. Use hand pruners to snip off any dead branches. Space juniper shrubs 2-4 feet apart for fullness.

Junipers add pleasing structure and texture to the landscape and complement other foundation plants nicely. They work well with ornamental grasses, roses, and perennials like catmint and lavender. Let juniper’s silver-green or blue-green colors shine as a low maintenance, drought tolerant foundation plant.

Panicle Hydrangea

Panicle Hydrangea
Place the Little Lime hydrangeas along the front walk to greet guests with bursts of refreshing color.

Pruning and seasonal care are key to growing healthy Little Lime panicle hydrangeas. Prune in late winter to encourage lush growth and remove dead stems. Prepare the soil with compost and make sure they receive at least 5 hours of morning sun.

Water regularly during summer heat. Fertilize in early spring and midsummer using a balanced organic fertilizer.

Group them with dwarf lilacs, hostas, catmint, and ornamental grasses. Their lime green flowers will stand out beautifully against purples, blues, and greys.

With the right care, Little Lime hydrangeas will thrive as vibrant foundation plants around your home’s entry.

Switch Grass

Switch Grass
You’ll love how the striking vertical form of Prairie Winds ‘Totem Pole’ switchgrass sways gracefully in the breeze while providing year-round visual interest. This hardy North American native thrives in a wide range of conditions, surviving temperatures as low as -30°F for long-lasting durability.

Its compact size makes this ornamental grass ideal for foundation plantings or as a thriller in containers.

Growing just 3-4 feet tall and 2 feet wide, ‘Totem Pole’ works well along walkways, borders, and in mass plantings where vertical accent is desired. Its thin, needle-like foliage emerges blue-green in spring, morphs to golden tan in summer, and fades to blonde in winter.

For best results, plant in full sun and well-drained soil. Once established, switchgrass is drought tolerant and requires little care beyond cutting it back in late winter before new shoots appear.

False Cypress

False Cypress
Living gracefully within nature’s temperament, Soft Serve® and Pinpoint® false cypress cultivars lend endurance and charm.

  • Their soft, feathery foliage adds fine texture.
  • Varied growth habits like mounds, columns, and spreading forms allow design flexibility.
  • Tolerant of heat, drought, humidity, and poor soils.
  • Provide year-round evergreen structure.

With the stamina to thrive through difficult conditions, these tough beauties withstand what nature dishes out. Their refined appearance graces landscapes with elegance, no matter the season. False cypress’ steadfast presence and flowing forms will elevate your home’s curb appeal for years to come, making them an ideal choice for foundation plantings that merge resilient nature with cultured style.

Rose of Sharon

Rose of Sharon
Embracing simple pleasures like the Chiffon series of Rose of Sharon brings beauty and joy to your home’s landscape. This versatile shrub thrives in zones 5-9 with vibrant blooms from midsummer into fall.

Variety Height Notes
Pink Chiffon 8-10 ft Reliable pink blooms
Purple Chiffon 10-12 ft Rich purple flowers
Scarlet Chiffon 8-10 ft Brilliant red blossoms

Space plants 6-8 feet apart for good air circulation. Prune in late winter to shape and improve flowering. Water during drought and fertilize in early spring. Avoid excess nitrogen, which causes leggy growth.

Group shrubs near the front door or corners for striking color. Combine with evergreens like dwarf false cypress for year-round appeal.


Your home deserves the perfect foundation plants to create a beautiful and inviting outdoor atmosphere. From stonecrop to rose of Sharon, you can find varieties that suit your needs and offer year-round interest.

Whether you’re looking for vibrant flower spikes, evergreen foliage, or edible fruit, you’re sure to find a foundation plant that will bring life to your landscape. With a little homework and some careful planting, you can transform your home’s exterior with foundation plants that are sure to impress.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.