Archive for March, 2013

Golden Hakone Grass Is Worth The Extra Care

  Awaken dark zones in your shade garden with this wonderful golden treasure from Japan. Golden hakonegrass (Hakonechloa macra ‘Aureola’) grows 12-18 inches tall and 18-24 inches wide in a cascading mound form.   Very thin green stripes (veins) line the mid-rib of the ½ inch wide golden leaf blades. Tiny, relatively ininsignificant, floral spikes (inflorescences) appear for […]

Shredded Umbrella Plant Handles Dry Shade

Shredded umbrella plant (Syneilesis aconitifolia) is a non-aggressive woodland ground cover which is native to dry hillsides in China, Japan, and Korea (USDA hardiness zones 4 thru 8). It has a medium green lacy foliage which you will treasure in the shade garden. While its flowers may be tiny and inconspicuous, the circular umbrella foliage […]

Tiger Eyes® Sumac Far Less Aggressive

I’m uneasy to recommend our native invasive sumac in a home landscape, but Tiger Eyes sumac (Rhus typhina ‘Bailtiger’), known as Tiger Eyes®, is far less aggressive (USDA hardiness zones 4-8). Its brightly colored cut-leaf foliage will definitely catch your attention in the summer. Leaves turn maroon-red in the autumn. This small deciduous tree or […]

Something New to Grow – Esperanza, Yellow Bells

                Esperanza or Yellow Bells (Tecoma stans) is a 6 foot tall perennial shrub that grows in South Texas and Mexico (USDA zones 8-10). Esperanza means “hope” and it is destine to become a popular flowering annual in more U.S. Southeastern gardens. It demands a well drained soil […]

Fall Color Calendar For Red Maple

Red maple (Acer rubrum) is commonly planted as a 40-60 feet tall street or shade tree (USDA hardiness zones 3-9). Tiny red flowers burst open early, often in early March throughout the Southern Appalachian region (USDA hardiness zones 6 and 7). Flowers give way to reddish double winged samaras. Its glossy dark green 3-5 lobed […]

Little Girl Magnolias Avoid Early Spring Frosts

The early flowering deciduous magnolias, namely star (Magnolia stellata) and tulip (M. soulangeana) magnolias, are often susceptible to late winter-early spring frosts. In the 1980’s the U.S. National Arboretum released the series of 8 shrub-type cultivars called the “Little Girl Magnolias”. They were crosses between M. liliiflora and M. stellata. Over ten years these deciduous […]

Virginia Bluebells – An Early Spring Wildflower

In early spring Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica) is an ephemeral woodland wildflower. In early April their lovely presence is to be enjoyed for a short 8-10 week period. Clusters of pinkish-blue nodding buds burst forth into soft pastel blue flowers. Gradually, the bell -shaped flowers age to pale pink hues. The lovely blue flowers are […]

Treat Colorful Caladiums As Tender Annuals

Caladiums at Yewdell Gardens in Crestwood, KY (near Louisville) Caladiums (Caladium bicolor) are tropical foliage plants which are grown as annuals. Caladiums brighten up shady to sunny spots. Their brightly colored foliage is either heart and lanced shaped in color combinations ranging from red, rose, pink, chartreuse, green, and white. Caladiums absolutely prefer a warm, […]

Early Blooming Cornelian Cherry In The March Garden

Cornelian cherry (Cornus mas) is a multi-stemmed, low-branched dogwood tree or shrub. It typically grows 20-25 feet tall and slightly less in overall width (USDA hardiness zones 4-7). Tiny, golden yellow flowers appear in late winter, around March 1st in my east Tennessee garden, and remain in bloom through most of the month despite cold […]

Epimediums Excel As Dry Shade Groundcovers

Epimediums, aka barrenwort or fairy wings, are slow-growing groundcovers which are hardy in USDA hardiness zones 4-9. Foliage varies by species, variety, and the season of the year. Most are deciduous, but some evergreen in the Southern Appalachian region (zones 6 and 7). The leaves of some may be chartreuse in spring, green in summer, […]