Archive for the ‘Evergreens’ Category

Five Evergreens For Small Garden Spaces

The following five evergreen shrubs are smaller versions of the larger growing species. They make a better fit in smaller urban gardens. Gyokuryu Japanese cedar (Cryptomeria japonica ‘Gyokuryu’) is a fast-growing, broadly conical selection with coarse bluish-green evergreen foliage. The needles are highly ornamental and remain bluish-green through most of the winter in zone 6 and […]

Live Cut Foliage And Berries For Home Holiday Decorations

Many conifers make great cuts for indoor and outdoor Christmas decorations. Foliage choices: Eastern red cedar and many other junipers, white pine, Norway spruce, Colorado spruce, Balsam fir, Canadian hemlock, Arizona cypress (and cultivars ‘Carolina Sapphire’ and ‘Blue Ice’),  and False cypresses (C. pisifera). Needle retention varies among species. For example, Norway spruce and balsam […]

Protect Young Trees and Shrubs From Voles, Rabbits And Other Critters

Rabbits, chipmunks, and voles (field mice) need a home for the winter. They often choose to nestle up near newly planted trees and shrubs and gnaw  on their sweet sapwood, girdling the trunk and essentially killing the tree. Fruit-bearing plants often damaged by critters over their first 1-2 winters include: apple, pear, peach, redbud, blueberry, and cane fruits. Young […]

How Drought Affects Our Landscape Trees*

Long term drought can be devastating on landscape and woodland trees. An environmentally stressed tree must expend additional energy to survive. Extremes of drought leads to decreases in trunk diameter and height growth, declining resistance to pests and diseases, less food production via photosynthesis, and in flower and fruit production. Symptoms of drought stress include wilted […]

ACS SOUTHEAST REGION CONIFER REFERENCE GARDENS*

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 […]

Purchasing A Cut Christmas Tree

Around the holidays lots of people head out to local Christmas farms to purchase a tree. Local farms offer the best freshly cut trees that should last 3 or more weeks inside your home. Trees for sale in urban lots may have been harvested  between 1-4 weeks earlier and shipped to your vicinity. A cut Christmas […]

Japanese Larch Is Preferred In Northern U.S.

Larches (Larix spp.) are majestic deciduous conifers in their northern ranges of their habitat (USDA hardiness zone 4 to 7). However, trees do not prosper in hot and humid summers south of USDA Zone 7. One of the best is Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi), but unfortunately, it is not commonly planted in U.S. landscapes. The tree averages 50-60 feet in height and 25-35 […]

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. […]

Monitor And Manage Two-Spotted Spider Mites

              Two-spotted spider mites are destructive pests that ravage a wide host of shrubs and garden plants, including certain house plants, annuals, perennials, herbs and vegetables. Many evergreens are also susceptible. Two-spotted spider mites are warm season arachnids, not insects, and are exceptionally troublesome over a hot dry summer. They […]

Distyliums As Cherry Laurel Or Holly Substitute

Hybrid distyliums (Distylium myricoides × racemosum) are compact evergreen shrubs for full sun to partial shade USDA hardiness zones 7 to 9. They are heat and drought tolerant, and are not fussy, growing in average soil with subpar drainage. Distyliums are members of the witchhazel family (Hamamelidaceae). Their tiny reddish-maroon flowers appear in late January through March, but offer little ornamental value in the […]