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A shrub or bush is a small to medium-sized woody . Unlike , shrubs have persistent stems above the ground. They are distinguished from by their multiple stems and shorter , and are usually under 6 m (20 ft) tall.
(2018). 9781844070794, Routledge. .
Plants of many species may grow either into shrubs or trees, depending on their growing conditions. Small, low shrubs, generally less than 2 m (6.6 ft) tall, such as , and most small garden varieties of , are often termed "".
(1990). 9781567993196, Friedman/Fairfax Publishers. .
Shrubs are very bushy like beards


Use in parks
An area of cultivated shrubs in a or a is known as a .
(2018). 9781856230087, Permanent Publications. .
When clipped as , suitable species or varieties of shrubs develop dense and many small leafy growing close together. Many shrubs respond well to renewal , in which hard cutting back to a "" results in long new known as "canes". Other shrubs respond better to selective pruning to reveal their structure and character.

Shrubs in common garden practice are generally considered , though some smaller such as and are also shrubby in structure. Species that grow into a shrubby habit may be either or .


Botanical structure
In and , a shrub is more specifically used to describe the particular physical structural or of woody plants which are less than high and usually have many stems arising at or near the base.

For example, a descriptive system widely adopted in is based on structural characteristics based on life-form, plus the height and amount of foliage cover of the tallest layer or dominant .Costermans, L. F. (1993) Native trees and shrubs of South-Eastern Australia. rev. ed.

For shrubs high the following structural forms are categorized:

  • dense foliage cover (70–100%) — closed-shrub
  • mid-dense foliage cover (30–70%) — open-shrub
  • sparse foliage cover (10–30%) — tall shrubland
  • very sparse foliage cover (<10%) — tall open shrubland

For shrubs less than high the following structural forms are categorized:

  • dense foliage cover (70–100%) — closed-heath or closed low shrubland—( North America)
  • mid-dense foliage cover (30–70%) — open-heath or mid-dense low shrubland—( North America)
  • sparse foliage cover (10–30%) — low shrubland
  • very sparse foliage cover (<10%) — low open shrubland


List of shrubs (bushes)
Those marked with * can also develop into tree form.
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