Archive for January, 2015

Tree Of Heaven Grows Almost Everywhere (Unfortunately)

Tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissima) is one of the most aggressive trees on planet Earth (USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8). This large tree, indigenous to China, was introduced in North America in 1748 and brought to New York City in 1820 as a street tree and a food source for silkworm caterpillars. The tree […]

2015-16 Hosta Awards Announced

Chosen by American Hosta Growers*, the winners are… 2015 Hosta of the Year Victory is an impressive plant. It forms giant vase-shaped clumps with large, shiny leaves with green centers and margins that change from greenish yellow in the spring to creamy white by early summer. Victory is big hosta that grows 30 inches high […]

Winter Blooming Flowering Apricot

Flowering apricot (Prunus mume) is native to southeastern Asia(USDA hardiness zones 6-8). It is primarily grown for its mid to late winter bloom of pink flowers. This small 15-20 feet tall tree grows in average well-drained, acidic soils in full sun to partial shade. Avoid planting in heavy or wet soils. Most abundant flowering occurs in full sun. In the […]

Hiring A Tree Service

  The trees around your home do much more than provide seasonal beauty and cooling shade in the summer months. Just as you need to get an occasional haircut, trees (and shrubs) need pruning as well. Homeowners should invite a trained arborist to inspect their trees every 5 -7 years. First, select a tree pruner who is licensed and […]

Sycamore Maple Performs In Cooler Regions

              Sycamore maple, aka planetree maple (Acer pseudoplatanus) is indigenous to northern and central Europe where it is a popular landscape tree. Very commonly planted in the northeastern U.S. in the early 20th century, this large 50-60 foot tree is rarely found today (USDA zones 4 and 7).  A mature specimen in Jonesborough, Tennessee (zone 6) is over […]

Take A Second Look At Canadian Hemlock

              Canadian hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) is a native evergreen species which is available in many forms: prostrate, globose, weeping, fastigiate and variegated (USDA Hardiness Zones 3-7). Its tremendous versatility as a hedging tree or shrub  in planting sites is also a great reason to continue to include hemlock in the landscape. Hemlock may […]

Mt. Cuba Center Evaluates Heuchera (Coralbells) Cultivars

              Over the past quarter century, gardeners have enjoyed the wonderful heuchera revolution (USDA hardiness zones 4-9). A great many hybrid cultivars have been introduced with more arriving every spring. Unfortunately, the flood of new cultivars has given us a huge number of poor selections. As I talk with […]

What Roses Need

              A goal of most rose gardeners (rosarians) is to grow them almost maintenance free. The improved shrub roses introduced almost two decades ago have brought this too reality. Rose series such as Knockout®, Home Run®, Drift®, OSO Easy®, Carefree® and Meidiland™ are among the best. No matter the pedigree of the rose, selecting a […]

Blue Atlas Cedar Becoming Very Popular In Urban Landscape

Blue Atlas cedar (Cedrus atlantica ) hails from the Atlas Mountains in northern Morocco and Algeria (USDA hardiness zone 6). The cultivar ‘Glauca’ has been the popular choice because of its blue green foliage. Blue Atlas grows to 40-60 feet in height, but individuals over 70 feet are hard to find. Mature forms, those 50 […]

Many Shapes and Sizes Of Cryptomerias

  Japanese cedar, aka cryptomeria, (Cryptomeria japonica) is the national tree of Japan and is also indigenous to China (USDA hardiness zones 5 to 8).  Cryptomeria cultivars vary greatly from very dwarf to rounded shrubs to large tree forms. Needle-like foliage may be dark green, medium green, golden or contorted leaves. Cryptomerias tolerate hot humid summers and […]