Archive for March, 2012

Piedmont Azalea

Piedmont Azalea (R. canescens) at Callaway Gardens Early flowering Piedmont azalea (Rhododendron canescens) is one of the most common native deciduous azaleas in the southeastern U.S. It is frequently confused for pinxterbloom azalea (R. periclymenoides) which blooms 3-4 weeks later. Piedmont azalea is hardy in USDA hardiness zones 6 to 9.   Piedmont azalea reaches a mature height between […]

Evergreen Kousa Dogwood? – Depends on Where You Garden

Chinese (kousa) dogwood (Cornus kousa) is a small spring flowering dogwood. Kousa blooms about 2 – 3 weeks after our native flowering dogwood (C. florida) has finished. Lustrous dark green leaves begin to emerge a week or two before the lovely pointed 3- inch white bracted flowers. Fall leaf color is purplish red and not quite as vibrant […]

Very Tall Stake For A Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar

  Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar (Cedrus atlantica ‘Glauca Pendula’) is “gravity prone”. This strongly weeping tree just doesn’t happen without staking in its formative years. At planting position a sturdy 12-16 foot metal or plastic stake or rod close to the trunk at planting time. The staking and tying procedure is neither complicated nor time […]

Contorted Filbert Offers Great Fall And Winter Interest

Contorted filbert (Corylus avellana ‘Contorta’), aka Harry Lauder’s walking stick, is an 8-10 foot tall shrub. It grows in average well-drained acidic or mildly alkaline soil and thrives either in full or partial (6 hours) sunlight. Contorted filbert is usually sold in a grafted form. It is also called corkscrew hazelnut because most branches, twigs and leaves display […]

Evaluating The Weeping Redbuds

  There  are so many fine redbuds (Cercis spp.) which are hardy in the Southern Appalachian region (USDA zones 6 and 7) and elsewhere.  Through research and breeding efforts at the JC Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh, NC, Southeast U.S. gardeners can grow several more cultivars of our native Eastern redbud (C. canadensis and subspecies texensis) and […]

Protect Fruit Trees and Bee Population

Cedar rust infection spot Warm weather in early spring means scab, cedar apple rust and powdery mildew diseases are upon the new leaves as they start to emerge. Preventative spraying for leaf diseases will result in management of additional fungi diseases through the growing season. Fungicides are protectants and not cure-alls. A light rain shower (as […]

Don’t Let’em Sucker

Some grafted and budded shrubs and trees develop a bad habit to sending up shoots (suckering) from its rootsystem. This creates an untidy appearance around the base of shrubs and trees. Far worse, the root suckers may compete for domination over the cultivar graft. They may rob photosynthate, water and nutrients from the grafted plant. Eventually, the grafted portion may die. Gardeners select grafted plants for a number […]

Powis Castle Artemisia Is Exceptional

Most artemisias (aka “wormwood”) can not cope with the summer heat and humidity in the mid-South. Their silvery foliage tends to burn out (some say “melt out”) in mid to late summer. ‘Powis Castle’ artemisia is truly the exception. Powis Castle is likely a hybrid (Artemisia arborescens x A. absinthium Powis Castle is a bushy, woody-based perennial […]

‘Goshiki’ Osmanthus Brightens Up Any Garden Spot

 Holly Tea Olive (Osmanthus spp.) comprises a number of evergreen shrubs from Japan which are winter hardy in USDA zone 7- 9. ‘Goshiki’ (O. heterophyllus ‘Goshiki’) is a hardier compact evergreen shrub, which grows very slowly at 3-4 inches per year. It is long-lived, maturing to 5- 6 feet in height and 5 to 7 […]

Efforts To Solve Japanese Barberry Invasive Problem

Japanese barberry (Berberis thunbergii) is a very popular landscape shrub. Japanese barberry is indigenous to Eastern Europe and Asia and is commonly planted in USDA hardiness zones 4-8. There is justified concern over the invasive nature of Japanese barberry. A number of states have declared most barberry species (Berberis spp.) to be invasive and have […]