Archive for November, 2014

List of Zone 6 Hardy Camellias Grows Longer

                If you live and garden in USDA hardiness zone 6, several camellia cultivars are winter hardy. The past decade has seen an increase in the list of hardy cultivars. These same cultivars are also reliable planted in zone 7. Here is a sampling of the best Zone […]

Species Tulips Thrive in Tough Spots

    Species tulips (mini-tulips) are tough! In the wild they grow in the winter environs and dry soils of Central Asia, the Middle East, and China (USDA hardiness zones 3-7). In gardens they prosper for many years in full to partial sun and in average soil with good drainage. Over the centuries mini-tulips have been improved. […]

Tips On Crape Myrtles In Fall And Winter

                  Hardy cultivars of crape myrtles are best left alone in the fall. Light pruning to remove a broken branch or the seed capsules is ok, but major pruning should wait until early spring.  “Crape murder” is a common practice in the Southeast U.S. and is not recommended any time or place. It involves lopping […]

Dragon Eye – Actually Four Different Pines

              In U.S. nursery catalogs, at least four gold striped needle pines are designated “Dragon’s Eye Pine”. They are Japanese red pine (Pinus densiflora ‘Oculus Draconis’), Japanese black pine (P. thunbergi ‘Oculus Draconis’), Variegated Korean pine (P. koraiensis ‘Oculus Draconis’) and Variegated Himalayan pine (P. wallichiana ‘Zebrina’) (USDA hardiness […]

Trees And Shrubs That Grow In Poorly Drained Soils

If a section of your landscape is poorly drained, there are a number of trees and shrubs that will adapt over time to short periods of wet or soggy soils. Plant roots must survive in low oxygen soils. Your choices of plants are not lengthy; few landscape plants will not tolerate root suffocation for even […]

Better Choices Than Leyland Cypress For Privacy Screen

For homeowners in a rush to establish a tall green privacy screen from the neighbor(s), perhaps a 12-foot tall green fence may be your better option. Among the choices of evergreens to plant, Leyland cypress (x Cupressocyperus leylandii) is fastest growing, but is plagued by any of three serious disease problems. An established leyland cypress planted 12 feet apart completely […]

‘Gyokuryu’ Japanese Cedar -Privacy Screen For Small Gardens

Gyokuryu Japanese cedar (Cryptomeria japonica ‘Gyokuryu’) is a dense, broadly pyramidal evergreen shrub (USDA hardiness zones 5-8). It has short stiff needles that tend to be a slightly darker green than other cryptomeria cultivars. Gyokuryu holds its dark green color through most winters in zone 7 and further south. Expect winter bronzing when Gyokuryu is […]

Carolina Buckthorn Attractive Native Shrub/Tree

Many native plant enthusiasts consider the Carolina Buckthorn, aka Indian cherry (Rhamnus caroliniana), one of our most underutilized native shrubs or small trees. It suffers with a bad common name as it has no thorns or spines. This open, slender branched shrub grows 12 to 15 feet high and 10 to 15 feet wide. (USDA hardiness zones 5-9). Bright green leaves remain on […]

Bee Bee Tree (Tetradium) Rarely Seen In U.S. Landscapes

                  Native to Korea and southwestern China, bee bee tree (Tetradium daniellii) is a deciduous tree with a spreading umbrella-shaped habit and rounded canopy (USDA hardiness zones 4-8). It was formerly named Evodia daniellii. Bee bee tree typically grows to 25-30 feet tall and wide. In July-August small […]