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Front foundation shrub dilemma

last month

Zone 4
Full( bright) shade- the porch blocks the sun all day
Max 4’ tall shrub

We originally purchased the house with an Annabelle foundation planting. This is located under a gutter and the Annabelle would flop onto the sidewalk without fail. We replaced with 6 arctic fire dogwood which have done very well in the location. The problem is, they grew 5+ feet, larger than expected, and now overwhelm the foundation and generally look untidy. I would like to replace them but am stuck between two directions.

  1. Panicle hydrangea- razzleberri. This is an ideal size hydrangea and has been bred for sturdy stems, which I believe would hold up under the gutters. This strip of foundation gets no direct sunlight so I understand blooming might be somewhat diminished. Would I be dooming myself to leggy, unattractive hydrangeas in this space?

  2. Cleotha- summersweet. The shade would be fine, and the pollinator boost is attractive, but other than blooming time I am not sure how attractive this shrub would be. I’m also not interested in doing much supplemental watering beyond the first year.


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