Saturday, June 10, 2017

New kids in the yard

They say the best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. I don't let that stop me, especially since removing all the silver maples left my property rather lacking in shade. The newest tree is the Perfect Purple flowering crabapple.

Malus 'Perfect Purple' in situ

The leaves of this beauty remain purple throughout spring and summer, which I why I picked it, then turn red in the fall. The spring flowers are rose, the fruit a deep purple. It should grow to be 20' x 20'.

Malus 'Perfect Purple' leaves

I'm past the point of digging holes for trees, so I had Arbor Farms plant it, but my SO and I were able to handle two new shrubs.

Cotinus coggygria 'Ancot' GOLDEN SPIRIT

After visiting some friends who own a wholesale nursery, I came home with a Golden Spirit smokebush/smoketree. (Tomato, tomahto.) I spotted this plant while on the Garden Bloggers Fling last summer and decided I had to have one, to go with the purple one I already have.

Cotinus coggygria 'Ancot' in situ

I have six purple plants in my front yard - in the photo above you can see (from left to right) the Crimson King maple, a Japanese maple, and a sandcherry - and want some significant yellows/golds for contrast. Right now the smokebush looks like a light is shining on it from above. I'm anxious to see how it looks when it "smokes".

Cotinus coggygria 'Ancot' birds eye view

Smokebushes can get rather large - up to 15' tall and 15' wide'. I planted its purple cousin too close to the house and now that the King Crimson is big enough to cast some shade, it gets leggy from not quite enough light. I gave this yellow one plenty of room and a sunny spot so it will continue to shine.

Cotinus coggygria 'Ancot' up close and personal

Arbor Farms sent me a coupon for $45, which happened to be what a Lemony Lace elderberry cost. I was going to plant it next to the front porch, at it tolerates shade, but I was afraid too much shade would cause its lemon color to turn to green. Instead, the plant is nestled between the mugo pine and cotoneaster, in front of the picture window.

Sambucus racemosa 'SMNSRD4' in situ

I've avoided elderberry in the past because it usually requires wet feet and can spread. This one needs regular watering but is adapted to well drained soils. If it tries to spread, it will be blocked by a ring of edging that came with the house and until recently circled a boxwood.

Sambucus racemosa 'SMNSRD4' birds eye view

This specimen is supposed to grow to be about 5'x5', so I may have to do some judicious pruning to prevent it from blocking the view. But it also can get a bit leggy, and if that means an open habit, it may provide some privacy without too much obstruction. Although developed primarily for its foliage, it does produce white blossoms in the spring which develop into red berries.

Sambucus racemosa 'SMNSRD4' up close and personal

My front yard feels a bit full now, although I would also like to add a Sunkist arborvitae and a few Fire Chief globe arborvitae, maybe planted in a grouping. I'll let these newbies settle in first.

1 comment:

Jason said...

Hooray for crabapples! You can never have too many.