Common Name: Cotoneaster
Skill Level: Beginner
Exposure: Full sun, Partial shade
Soil type: Well-drained/light, Clay/heavy, Acidic, Chalky/alkaline, Moist
Time to plant seeds: September to November
Deciduous cotoneasters are fine plants with attractive flowers in late spring and early summer, but they're mainly grown for their brilliant displays of berries and bright leaf tints in autumn, when they become a major feature. C. horizontalis has excellent late colour, but is also popular for the characteristic herringbone pattern of its stems, which develop into a decorative basketwork across the ground or on a wall, according to how it is trained. It is invaluable in shade, although its crops of neat pink flowers and bright red berries are more prolific in full sun. The Royal Horticultural Society has given it its Award of Garden Merit (AGM).