Archive for the ‘container shrub’ Category

Stop The “Crape Murder”

In Tennessee (where I live) and in the Southeastern U.S., bad crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia x) pruning continues to be done by professional landscapers and homeowners (USDA hardiness zones 6-9). This practice, also called “topping”, reduces tree (or shrub) height. Over 25 years, Southern Living magazine called this “crape murder”. Crape murder is not going away. More crape […]

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 […]

Landscaping Plantings Around A Garden Railroad

      Garden railroad layouts are becoming more popular. A number of dwarf and compact growing plants play a major role in landscaping around the layout. Many miniature forms of taller varieties are available. Here are several great plant choices to add the your garden railroad: Trees and Shrubs – offer scale or tall canopy […]

Five Simple Pruning Tips For DIYers

Gardeners are frequently scared about making pruning mistakes. There are lots of gardening books filled with lots of before and after photos. Let’s face facts…your yard tree or shrub does look like the ones pictured in the pruning book. Here are my simple 5 steps for pruning: Why and When to prune: You can prune a […]

Little Goblin® Series Of Deciduous Hollies

Little Goblin® Red (Ilex verticillata ‘NCIV1’) is one of the new creation from plant breeder Dr. Tom Ranney, at the North Carolina Research And Extension Center in Mills River, NC. It is the first ever tetraploid winterberry. This dwarf variety is also exceptionally hardy and easy to care for. Little Goblin® Orange (‘NCIV2’) is extremely early flowering and […]

Arctic Fire™ Dogwood Brightens Up Winter Landscape

Red-twig or red osier dogwood (Cornus stolonifera) is a native shrub (USDA hardiness zones 2-7). It reaches 8 to 10 feet in height and roots sucker prolifically. It can become a chore keeping it contained in small garden spaces. Arctic Fire™ is a superior cultivar identified by its fiery red stems and compact growth habit. Expect […]

Fine Tuning Growing Calamondin Orange In The Home

Calamondin orange (Citris mitis) is challenging to grow in a home environment. It is hardy to 20°F., more than most other true citrus (USDA hardiness zone 8). It does not grow well in temperatures below 45ºF. In temperate regions calamondin spends the active growing months (May – October) outdoors either in direct sunlight (in northern areas) and in half day shade (in […]

American Witchhazel Blooms in Autumn

American witchhazel (Hamamelis virginiana) is the last native flowering plants to bloom in the calendar year. It is a deciduous shrub or small tree, native to woodlands, forest margins and stream banks in eastern North America (USDA hardiness zones 3-8). It typically grows 15-20 feet tall as a multi-stemmed shrub and 30 feet tall in tree form. Beginning in […]

Conifers for Small Garden Spaces

Some properties can not accommodate the enormous size of tall evergreen trees. In the world of conifers, a select number of genetically dwarf species and varieties are better fits for small spaces. Most evergreens are sun lovers and require a well-drained soil. Mulching around trees and shrubs also benefits to conserve soil moisture and keep roots cool. […]

Five Landscape Plants On The Gardeners’ Taboo List

To many people, maintaining a garden or landscape means a lot of hard work. Sometimes the weeds outgrow what you have planted. Some landscape plants promise a lot of beauty but deliver nothing but problems. Some trees are weak wooded, prone to pests or diseases, and outgrow their space. Some produce smelly odorous flowers. I urge […]