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The Gossler Guide to the Best Hardy Shrubs: More than 350 Expert Choices for Your Garden

By Roger Gossler, Eric Gossler, and Marjory Gossler

Foreword by John E. Elsley

If [the Gosslers] have a mission, it is to get you to look past the country's twenty most common shrubs — the ones that make new housing developments look so much alike — and get to know some of the alternatives.


For most homeowners, shrubs are an essential part of the yard or garden because they provide shade, flowers, and foliage from spring through fall. Unfortunately, the choices available at many garden centers tend to be predictable and often unsuited to the local climate and growing conditions.

It doesn't have to be that way. The superior plants available today can transform ho-hum gardens into scenes of beauty and serenity. For decades, the Gossler family has tested, propagated, and sold the very best hardy shrubs from around the world. This book is a distillation of their expertise — a guide to more than 350 of the most beautiful, versatile, and growable shrubs. Plant profiles describe the plant's main characteristics, give height and spread, and list the growing conditions needed to thrive.

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Media reviews

"The book, broken down alphabetically by genus, includes plenty of the new and trendy-at-the-moment plants but doesn't neglect the 'old warhorses.' ... No matter the plant, though, each one was chosen with Gossler's massive knowledge of shrubs."

—Kym Pokorny, Oregonian

"Even though I grow plenty of shrubs and read voraciously, the Gosslers' book introduced me to new varieties that I want to try."

—Barbara Blossom Ashmun, Portland Tribune

"Gardeners in the Pacific Northwest will get the most out of this useful work because of similar growing conditions to the Gosslers, but gardeners in zones 5–9 will also find worthy choices."

—Sue O'Brien, Library Journal

"If [the Gosslers] have a mission, it is to get you to look past the country's twenty most common shrubs — the ones that make new housing developments look so much alike — and get to know some of the alternatives."

—Jim McCausland, Fresh Dirt blog

"Reading The Gossler Guide is like walking through the display garden with one of the Gossler family. The informal style, depth of knowledge about the plants, and passion with which the information is shared ... is totally engaging."

—Barclay and Sharon Simpson, Pacific Horticulture

About the authors

Roger Gossler

Roger Gossler grew up in Springfield, Oregon, and currently is the buyer and main grower for Gossler Farms Nursery. He avidly researches what is new in the trade and worthy of inclusion in the nursery's catalog, and he speaks regularly to garden groups around the country.

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Eric Gossler

Eric Gossler grew up in the Gossler family farm and nursery. After graduating from Oregon State University in Environmental Health and Safety, he moved to LaGrande, Oregon, to work as a consultant for an insurance company before returning home to work in the nursery. Eric is primarily responsible for physical operations, construction, and maintenance in this family enterprise. He is also the main packer for the shipping, boxing most of the orders personally.

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Marjory Gossler

Marjory Gossler is responsible for the office operations at Gossler Farms Nursery and reviews each order prior to shipping. She graduated from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon, in physical education and science. After several years as a teacher, she came to the farm and nursery where she has worked for the past 55 years. She plans to continue keeping Roger and Eric in line as long as there is still time for golf.

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