Archive for March, 2014

Beautiful Giant Dogwood Has Some Limitations

Giant dogwood (Cornus controversa) is a medium-sized deciduous tree that grows to 35 to 40 feet high (in the wild to 60 feet) in USDA hardiness zones 5 to 7. This Asian native (China and Japan) is cherished for its distinctive horizontal (tiered) branching habit. Giant dogwood prefers an acidic, organically rich, moisture, well-drained soil. […]

Serviceberry- Favorite Tree of Gardeners And Birdwatchers

On an early late winter’s morn, the frosty appearance from a nearby mountainside may actually be from our native serviceberries (Amelanchier spp.) (USDA hardiness zones 4-9). Serviceberry’s small white blooms frequently signals that winter’s end is near. Flowering may last 7-10 days. Downy serviceberry (A. arborea) and shrubby Allegheny serviceberry (A. laevis) are commonly planted. […]

Yoshino Flowering Cherry Is Southern Favorite

In The Southeast U.S. most ornamental flowering cherry trees (Prunus spp.) are challenged by summer heat and humidity. ‘Yoshino Cherry’ (Prunus x yedoensis) continues to be the top performer in the group (USDA hardiness zones 5-8). In 1912, the Japanese government gifted the United States 3000 Yoshino flowering cherries. In the years that followed, Yoshino […]

‘Blackout’ Heuchera Exceptionally Vigorous Type

A floral bouquet full of tiny flowers stand tall above the high gloss ebony foliage of Blackout coralbells (Heuchera x ‘Blackout’) (USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8). The foliage holds its color and sheen most of the summer. The foliage is evergreen through the winter in zones 6 thru 8. Airy spikes of cream colored […]

Hypearls® St. John’s Wort Worth The Hype

St. John’s Wort’s (Hypericum spp.) are terrific landscape shrubs and ground covers with bright yellow flowers in late spring and colorful berry fruits starting in late summer (USDA hardiness zones 5-9). Bees and birds are attracted to flowers and fruits respectively. Hypearls® are a new series of hypericums. Cultivars are available in four compact growing […]

Start Spring Out with Easy To Grow Japanese Pieris

Japanese pieris (Pieris japonica) offers a year-round show in a garden with evergreen foliage and showy bell-shaped blooms (USDA hardiness zones 5- 8). New spring foliage starts out bronze-colored and matures to dark green. Attractive, pendulous branches if ivory white flower appears in early spring. Remnants of the old seed heads generally persist into the […]

Re-starting Summer Flowering Shrubs After Winter Injury

Some non-hardy shrubs can be treated as hardy perennials. Crape myrtles (Lagerstroemia indica) and chastetree (Vitex agnus-castus) may emerge in poor condition after an unusually cold winter. Shrubs like butterfly bush (Buddleia spp.), and blue mist (Caryopteris spp.) often emerge in a ragged state, but recover quicker if cutback near the ground several weeks before […]

Plant Native Allegheny Spurge More

  Japanese pachysandra (Pachysandra terminalis) is a popular ground cover for partly shaded landscape areas. Our native pachsandra, called Allegheny spurge (P. procumbens), is less known and utilized. The glossy dark evergreen leaves are wider than Japanese pachysandra. Clusters of white bottlebrush flowers emerge 2-4 inches high in early spring; flowers mature pale pink as […]

Early Spring Flowering Okame Cherry

‘Okame’ Cherry is a hybrid between Taiwan Cherry (Prunus campanulata) and Fuji Cherry (P. incisa) (USDA hardiness zones 6-8). Okame is the first ornamental cherry to bloom in the Southern Appalachian Region (USDA hardiness zones 6 and 7). In the midst of a mild winter, Okame often starts blooming a few days after Valentine’s Day […]