Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Woodies continued ....

I am continuing around the house with the shrubs, some successes and some not so special.  All along the front right side of my house I have a shrub called Rhus Aromatica Grow Low.  It is aromatic and it is low.  Other than this it is a pain!  I have to trim it about three or four times a season to keep it from encrouching on my neighbor's yard, and last year it developed a scale problem - yuck!  It supposedly grows about three feet high and can have a spread of eight feet. I can see this on a hillside, but this is one I am rethinking.

I have put in some Endless Summer Hydrangeas along the side of my dining room.  They did well the first year and last year looked pretty good, but I am reserving my opinion because in zone 5 they have not always performed well.  They do need to be trimmed down in the spring  (I know they say they can grow on old and new wood, but mine die back to the ground) and fed with an acid fertilizer. 

As I move back on the north side of my house I have three wonderful hydrangeas called "Unique,"  not as floriferous as Limelight, but they thrive in partial shade.  I keep them lower than they are meant to be (can be up to ten feet) by cutting it down to about two feet in the spring.  It still gets pretty tall but not ten feet.  It has wonderful long panicles of rosy and white colored flowers in late summer, great for drying!

I really am delighted with the shrubs I have in the back of my yard.  They are Amelanchier Regent, not very well known in this classification.  It's namesake a much taller version is also known as Shadblow, Juneberry or Serviceberry and grows to ten or twenty feet depending upon the variety.  Regent only grows to three to six feet (mine are more like three feet), long panicles of white flowers in spring, berries in summer and glowing red leaves in the fall.

Shrubs contribute to the bones of the garden.  They should be attractive and have interest through more than one season and most of all be low maintenance.