Archive for the ‘Green Privacy Screen’ Category

‘Sunshine’ Privet: A Great Accent Shrub and It’s Not Invasive

  For generations ligustrum (privet) had been a landscape plant in East Coast and Southern gardens. However, in several states,  privets have become declared as an notoriously invasive species . Unfortunately, you should never brand all privet cultivars the same way. Sunshine privet (Ligustrum sinensis ‘Sunshine’) is likely to change your mind (USDA hardiness zones […]


I hear people say that conifers won’t grow in the southeastern U.S. Wanta bet! 2016 marks the 8th year of the Reference Garden program sponsored by the American Confer Society (ACS)- Southeast Region. From Kentucky and Virginia south to Florida, 19 public gardens were now participating in the program. Two of the latest additions are Brookgreen […]

Transform These Three Shrubs Into Trees

Some large shrubs can be trained into lovely small flowering trees. These three flowering shrubs may be trained into small 15-25 feet tall, single or multi- trunk trees: Siebold viburnum (Viburnum sieboldii) is a tall upright branched deciduous shrub (USDA hardiness zones 4-7). This native from Japan grows to 15-20 feet tall and 10-15 feet wide […]

Comparing Western Red Cedar And ‘Green Giant’ Arborvitaes

Western red cedar or giant red cedar (Thuja plicata) is native to the Pacific Northwest. In the eastern U.S. it is called western arborvitae and landscapers typically do not plant it. Instead, they plant the hybrid cultivar  ‘Green Giant’ arborvitae, a cross between western red cedar (T. plicata and Japanese arborvitae (T.  standishii). Western arborvitae […]

Oriental Spruce Stands Up to Southern U.S. Heat and Humidity

Oriental spruce (Picea orientalis) stands as a tall spire in the urban landscape. A mature tree may reach 50 to 60 feet tall and makes a narrow stature or footprint of 15 to 25 feet in spread. Lateral branches uniquely bend downward while the growing tips sweep gracefully upward. Annual growth rate is slow at 12-15 inches. Two-thirds of the short dark green needles lay flat. Needles are lustrous on the […]

Carolina Allspice Sweetshrub

Carolina allspice sweetshrub (Calycanthus floridus), aka strawberry bush, bubby bush, sweet Betsy, et al., is a trouble-free medium size spring flowering shrub. This dense rounded deciduous shrub is native to Eastern North America (USDA hardiness zones 4-8). As its common name hints, flowers emit a sweet fruity fragrance. Intensity of floral fragrance is highly variable […]

American Holly For Year-round Interest

American Holly (Ilex opaca) is a pyramidal evergreen tree that deserves to be planted more for multiple reasons. It is native to the eastern and central U. S. and is easily identified by its spiny green leaves (USDA hardiness zones 5 to 9). It grows slowly to 15 to 35 feet, sometimes taller.  The leathery, deep […]

Stylish Boulevard Cypress

            A twist here…a turn there, that’s the unique growth of Boulevard Cypress (Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Boulevard’). It is a popular medium-sized evergreen shrub for home and commercial landscapes (USDA hardiness zones 5-9).  Boulevard cypress exhibits a twisted pyramidal form with soft, silvery blue foliage that also grows in a slightly twisted manner. The fine, […]

Thunderhead Japanese Black Pine For A Different Look

Thunderhead Japanese Black Pine (Pinus thunbergii ‘Thunderhead’) is compact form of Japanese black pine. At maturity it may reach 20 to 25 feet high and 15 to 20 feet wide (USDA hardiness zones 5b-8). Expect this slow-growing conifer to grow 5 feet height and 4 feet width in 10 years. By mid-winter its very long […]

The Forsythia Revolution

              In most areas of the U.S., the golden yellow blossoms of forsythia (Forsythia x intermedia) signals that worst of winter weather is almost over (USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8). Over 2-3 weeks bright yellow flowers cover this easy to grow shrub. Priced at under $20, a good-sized forsythia […]