Archive for the ‘Trees & Shrubs’ Category

Distyliums Substitute For Cherry Laurels and Hollies

Distyliums (Distylium x), aka Isu tree, are being billed as “the best new plants you’ve never heard of”. Get accustomed to seeing these boxwood-like shrubs in local garden centers, e.g., if you live within USDA hardiness zones 6b-9. Distyliums are the result of selective breeding efforts to improve an evergreen shrub native to China at […]

Don’t Totally Dislike All Box Elder Trees

Box elder (Acer negundo) is a native fast-growing and suckering medium-sized tree (USDA hardiness zones 4b-8).  Branches are weak wooded and easily damaged in wind and ice storms. Box elder grows almost anywhere in any average soil, medium to wet, and in full sun. The species fails on a shady site. This weedy maple is […]

Causes of Sudden Leaf Scorch

Leaf scorch or foliage burn is caused primarily by environmental stress factors such as drying winds, drought, mechanical root injury, and winter injury . Natural pathogens, such as viruses, fungi, or bacteria, can be secondary causes. Spraying the wrong pesticide or accidentally allowing spray to drift onto a nearby susceptible landscape plant can result in chemical foliar […]

Ground Cover Types Of Flowering Abelias

Flowering abelias (Abelia x grandiflora) come in all shapes and sizes (USDA hardiness zones 6-9). Over the past decade the ground cover types have become very popular. They’re also utilized as accent plants in large containers. In zones 7 -8, they are evergreen. The term “ground cover” is used here to emphasize cultivars that  grow low, mostly […]

Agaves Like It Hot, Dry and Sunny

Agaves (Agave spp.) are long-leaved succulent landscape plants. These native perennial succulents  grow in desert-like environments (USDA hardiness zones 8 and warmer). Plants grow in a rosette form with long their fleshy leaves frequently tipped with one or more sharp spines and a prominent bloom spike with cup shaped flowers. Most are native to the Southwest U.S. […]

Firebush Is One Tough Texas Flowering Plant

Firebush. aka scarlet bush (Hamelia patens),  is indigenous from Mexico to Central America (USDA hardiness 10-11). Treat it as a tempermental perennial in zone 9, and an annual everywhere else it is not hardy. This fast growing plant blooms through most of summer into fall with showy clusters of tubular red buds and flowers. Firebush thrives in Texas heat […]

Check Out These Four Plant Select® Picks

If you’re search for top performing plants, especially very drought tolerant, take a look at the picks from Plant Select®. This is a nonprofit collaboration of Colorado State University, Denver Botanic Gardens and professional horticulturists. Their mission is to seek out and distribute the very best plants for landscapes and gardens from the intermountain region to […]

Less Invasive Butterfly Bush Identified

Butterfly bush (Buddleia) is a popular garden shrub in many areas of the U.S. Buddleia invasiveness is a serious issue in the Pacific Northwest. The Oregon Dept of Agriculture, Plant Division, has approved for sale these buddleia cultivars in the state. The approved varieties produce 2% or less viable seed, meeting Oregon’s standards for sterility. The […]

Panicle Hydrangeas For Small Gardens And Containers

Panicle, PeeGee or PG hydrangeas (Hydrangea panculata) brighten up your July-August garden. They hail from China and Japan and grow almost anywhere in the U.S. (USDA hardiness zones 3 – 8). PG hydrangeas are far more reliable in northern areas (zones 3-5), than mophead hydrangeas (H. macrophylla). They flower at their best in full to partial day sunlight (6 hours […]

Sorting Through The Joe Pye Cultivars

Joe Pye weed (Eutrichum purpureum) is a native perennial commonly spotted onthe edge of farm fields in the eastern and northern U.S. (USDA hardiness zones 4 to 9). The wild species grows 5-7 feet high and 2-4 feet wide. It blooms from late July to September and is a magnet to attract bees and butterflies. Over the past two […]