Archive for the shade vines Category

Woody Plants for Shade Part 10

Posted in Fall Color, native plants, Shade Shrubs, shade vines, winter interest with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2014 by Carolyn @ Carolyns Shade Gardens

Nursery News: Our 2014 Spring Shrub Offer is on line here and orders are due April 27.  Carolyn’s Shade Gardens’ third spring sale featuring native plants and wildflowers is scheduled for Saturday, April 26, from 10 am to 3 pm.  To get all the details, please sign up for our customer email list by sending your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.  Our 2014 Miniature Hosta Catalogue is now on line, click here.  It lists all the wonderful little hostas that will be available at the nursery and by mail. 

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Spring Shrub OfferClockwise from upper left: Pink Swamp Azalea, ‘Popcorn’ Snowball Bush, Oakleaf Hydrangea, Coastal Doghobble in winter, Carolina Jessamine, ‘Jet Trail’ Quince.

Because shade gardens are not composed solely of perennials, I offer woody plants—shrubs, trees, and vines—to my customers several times a year.  I want them to have a reliable source for large and healthy specimens, but I also want to make available woody plants for shade that are wonderful but hard-to-find.  I am in the middle of an offer right now, and customers need to let me know if they want to order by Sunday, April 27.  To see the 2014 Spring Shrub Offer, click here.

When I do these offers, I also do a post describing the plants in more detail.  These posts are some of the most popular I have ever written.  In fact, Woody Plants for Shade Part 2 is number four for all time views and Woody Plants for Shade Part 1 is number eight.  If you want to read about all the plants I have recommended, I have included links at the end of this post.  So let’s get to the plants that I am recommending this time, starting with three evergreen shrubs.

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Buxus microphylla Wintergreen 7-12-10_LSUnfortunately, the only shot I have of ‘Wintergreen’ boxwood shows it in a container, but at least you can see its loose habit and delicate leaves.

‘Wintergreen’ Korean or little leaf boxwood, Buxus microphylla var. koreana,  is a very useful shrub for hedges, edging, achieving a somewhat formal look, and adding evergreen interest to your garden.  At 2 to 4′ tall and 3 to 5′ wide, it doesn’t take up a lot of space.   As an added bonus, ‘Wintergreen’s’ small dark evergreen leaves maintain their green color in the winter unlike most boxwoods, which turn an ugly bronze-yellow.  The loose, rounded habit is easily pruned for use as a hedge.  It grows in part to full shade and is deer and disease resistant.  After this winter it is nice to know that ‘Wintergreen’ is extremely hardy to zone 4.

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Leucothoe axillaris MOBOTCoastal doghobble’s shiny evergreen leaves display its lovely, fragrant flowers beautifully.  Photo courtesy of the Missouri Botanical Garden Plant Finder.

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Leucothoe axillaris 11-7-11_LSThe winter foliage of coastal doghobble.

Coastal doghobble, Leucothoe axillaris, is native to the southeastern U.S., starting just south of Pennsylvania.  It has showy, arching clusters of white, fragrant flowers in May.  The glossy evergreen leaves  have excellent burgundy fall color.  Coastal doghobble looks great even after a hard winter unlike the more commonly available doghobble, L. fontanesiana, which always looks ratty to me.  It is deer resistant and grows 2 to 4′ tall and 3 to 5′ wide in part shade.  Evidently it was given the name doghobble by bear hunters because bears could crash through it but dogs would become entangled.

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Osmanthus heterophyllus Goshiki 10-26-11_LS‘Goshiki’ osmanthus has a beautiful blend of colors in its leaves and a wonderful fragrance.

‘Goshiki’ variegated holly tea olive, Osmanthus heterophyllus, has dramatic, holly-like evergreen leaves that emerge reddish bronze and change to a lovely blend of cream, gold, and green, lighting up dark corners.  Its delicious fragrance perfumes the garden in November when it blooms.  The prickly foliage repels deer.  My osmanthus came through this winter looking spectacular with no browning.  ‘Goshiki’ grows to 6′ tall and 4′ wide in full sun to full shade.  It received the coveted Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Award as an outstanding shrub for our area.

That covers the evergreens, now for the deciduous shrubs:

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Chaenomeles x superba 'Jet Trail'‘Jet Trail’ quince, Chaenomeles x superba, is loaded with buds and showy, pure white flowers every March (April this year!) and it only grows to 3′ tall and 3′ wide.  I have profiled it before so for all the details, click here.

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Hydrangea quercifoliaNative ‘Ellen Huff’ oakleaf hydrangea, Hydrangea quercifolia, has all the four season attributes of my favorite shrub—ornamental bark, beautiful fall color, bold-textured leaves, and gorgeous, long-lasting flowers—plus a vigorous habit and great branching structure.  For more details, click here to read my profile of oakleaf hydrangeas.
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Jasminum nudiflorumA close up of winter jasmine’s lovely yellow flowers.

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Jasminum nudiflorumI grow winter jasmine trailing over my terrace walls and enjoy its flowers all winter.

Although Winter jasmine, Jasminum nudiflorum, requires full sun, I am offering it because so many customers have asked for it after seeing my plants trailing off my terraces.  The soft yellow flowers open during warm spells throughout the winter and then prolifically in February and March (April this year) for a very long season.  The graceful, arching stems are dark green providing great winter interest.  The shiny dark green leaves have an unusual delicate texture.  When planted in a flat area, winter jasmine spreads to make an effective ground cover.  It is tough, adaptable, and deer resistant, growing to 3′ tall and 6′ wide in average garden soils.

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Rhododendron viscosum Betty Cummins 6-6-12_LS (1)Swamp azaleas usually have white flowers, but ‘Betty Cummins’ has lovely deep pink blooms.

‘Betty Cummins’ pink swamp azalea, Rhododendron viscosum, is a rare deep pink flowered form of our native swamp azalea.  Swamp azalea grows wild from Maine to Florida, and this particular form was found in New Jersey.  It blooms in early summer and has a wonderful spicy, clove-like scent.  The deciduous, lustrous deep green leaves turn an attractive orange to maroon in fall.  ‘Betty Cummins’ grows to 6′ tall and 5′ wide in part shade.  It is wet site tolerant and attracts hummingbirds and butterflies.

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Viburnum plicatum Popcorn 4-6-12_LS (2)‘Popcorn’ Japanese snowball bush is loaded with round white flowers earlier in the season than most other shrubs.

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Viburnum plicatum Popcorn 4-6-12_LS (5)A close up of ‘Popcorn’s’ flowers: although it looks like an hydrangea, it is actually a viburnum.

‘Popcorn’ Japanese snowball bush, Viburnum plicatum, has 3″ round blooms that open lime green and mature to pure white, putting on a stunning show for a full month in April and May.  The dark leathery green leaves turn burgundy red in fall.  ‘Popcorn’ has a lovely upright, tiered, and compact habit.  It grows to 5 to 8′ tall and 4 to 7′ wide in full sun to part shade, but it tolerates full shade.  It is deer resistant and heat and drought tolerant.

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Gelsemium sempervirens 'Margarita'‘Margarita’ Carolina jessamine grows on a fence in part shade.  It is native to the southeastern U.S. and has received a Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Award as an outstanding vine for our area.  To see my previous profile, click here.

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Gelsemium sempervirens 'Margarita'A close up of ‘Margarita’s’ fragrant yellow flowers.

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Those are the nine woody shade plants that I am currently offering to my customers.  If you want to read about more trees, shrubs, and vines for you shady garden, here are links to all my previous posts:

Woody Plants for Shade Part 1

Woody Plants for Shade Part 2

Woody Plants for Shade Part 3

Woody Plants for Shade Part 4

Woody Plants for Shade Part 5

Woody Plants for Shade Part 6

Woody Plants for Shade Part 7

Woody Plants for Shade Part 8

Woody Plants for Shade Part 9

Carolyn

Nursery Happenings: Our third sale featuring native plants and wildflowers is Saurday, April 26, from 10 am to 3 pm.  Customers on our list will get an email with all the details.  You can sign up to receive emails by sending your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.  The 2014 Spring Shrub Offer is here, and orders must be received by April 27.

Carolyn’s Shade Gardens is a local retail nursery in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, U.S., zone 7a. The only plants that we mail order are snowdrops and miniature hostas and only within the US.

If you are within visiting distance and would like to receive catalogues and information about customer events, please send your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net. Subscribing to my blog does not sign you up to receive this information.

Facebook: Carolyn’s Shade Gardens has a Facebook Page where I post single photos, garden tips, and other information that doesn’t fit into a blog post. You can look at my Facebook page here or click the Like button on my right sidebar here.

Notes: Every word that appears in orange on my blog is a link that you can click for more information. If you want to return to my blog’s homepage to access the sidebar information (catalogues, previous articles, etc.) or to subscribe to my blog, just click here.

Woody Plants for Shade Part 8

Posted in Camellias, evergreen, native plants, Shade Shrubs, shade vines with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 14, 2013 by Carolyn @ Carolyns Shade Gardens

Viburnum plicatum var. tomentosum 5-7-2011 7-14-31 PM 5-11-2011 8-29-02 AMMy garden reaches one of its peaks when the doublefile viburnum, V. plicatum var. tomentosum, is blooming.  It has such a beautiful habit and way of holding its flowers.  I am offering the award-winning cultivar ‘Shasta’.

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My nursery, Carolyn’s Shade Gardens, specializes in perennials for shade with an emphasis on hellebores, unusual bulbs especially snowdrops, hostas particularly miniature hostas, native plants, and ferns.  However, a satisfying shade garden does not consist of just perennials but includes trees, shrubs, and vines.  I provide a quality source for these plants by doing a special offer three times a year. 

I have just sent my second 2013 list to my customers.  To view the catalogue, click here.   However, I always do a post on the plants offered so that my blog readers who are not customers can learn about the woody plants that I would recommend they add to their shade gardens.  And doing an article allows me to add more information and explain why I chose the plants I included so customers might be interested also.

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Camellia x 'Winter's Darling'‘Winter’s Darling’ fall-blooming camellia with ‘Moudry’ black fountain grass.

This offer focuses on plants that are late spring-, summer-, or fall- blooming, evergreen, and/or native..  Included are two camellias, two additional evergreen shrubs, four deciduous shrubs, and three vines.  Four of the plants I have chosen are evergreen, and five bloom off season, in summer or fall.   This reflects  my desire to see gardeners expand their gardens’ season beyond spring to become a year round paradise for them to enjoy.  With that introduction, here are the plants I am highlighting:

Camellia x 'Winter's Darling'‘Winter’s Darling’


I have included two fall-blooming hardy camellias for their spectacular late season flowers and elegant evergreen leaves. These camellias, along with many other cultivars, have been selected to be fully cold hardy in the mid-Atlantic U.S., zones 6B and 7A.  Nevertheless all camellias benefit from being sited to shelter them from winter wind, which comes from the northwest.  They also maintain their lustrous dark green leaves in better shape if they are sheltered from winter sun.

‘Winter’s Darling’ is a camellia cultivar suitable for our area because it was selected for its cold hardiness by Dr. William Ackerman at the U.S. National Arboretum.  It has very showy deep cerise pink anemone form flowers in November and December and glossy dark evergreen leaves.  It grows slowly to 6′ tall and 5′ wide in part to full shade.  In my garden, it has a  shorter and more relaxed habit than my other camellias.

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Camellia Northern Exposure Monrovia‘Northern Exposure’ fall-blooming camellia.  Thanks to Monrovia for allowing me to use their photo.

I don’t currently grow the fall-blooming camellia ‘Northern Exposure’, but I am ordering one now to add to my garden.  It has gorgeous pale pink plump buds that open to very large, single white flowers with bright yellow stamens over a long period of time in fall and winter and glossy dark evergreen leaves.  It is 6’ tall and 5′ wide, growing in part to full shade.

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Osmanthus heterophyllus Gulftide PRN‘Gulftide’ holly osmanthus (also known as holly tea olive or false holly), O. heterophyllus, blooms in the fall and is fragrant.

Fall-blooming holly osmanthus ‘Gulftide’  is one of two additional evergreens in the offer, and I would grow it just for its dramatic, stiff and pointy, lustrous dark leaves.  Its small fragrant flowers perfume the garden in fall and the prickly foliage repels deer.  It grows slowly up to 8 to 10’ tall and 4’ wide in part to full shade.  It has a dense and compact habit and is very adaptable as to soil type  It is the most cold hardy of the osmanthus, suitable for zones 6 and higher.  For some reason it is hard to find and sells out immediately so if you want one, send me an email right away.  The nursery just notified me that they also have available a very limited number of the cultivar ‘Sasaba’ which sold out in my last offer.

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Viburnum x rhytidoppylloides 'Dart's Duke'I have offered the hybrid leatherleaf viburnum ‘Dart’s Duke’, V. x rhytidophylloides, before, and it is profiled in Woody Plants for Shade Part 3.  I am including it again because it is such a versatile evergreen, deer resistant plant, growing in sun or shade and making an excellent screen or hedge with gorgeous flowers.  A Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Plant in 2012.

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There are four deciduous shrubs in the offer:

Calycanthus x 'Hartlage Wine'Native hybrid ‘Hartlage Wine’ sweetshrub, Calycanthus raulstonii, is another repeat and was profiled in Woody Plants for Shade Part 1.  This shrub is in its glory right now with its gorgeous wine-red flowers set off beautifully by the smooth bright green leaves, one of my favorites.

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Hydrangea macrophylla Tokyo Delight PRNThe lovely flowers of ‘Tokyo Delight’ bigleaf hydrangea have an outer rim of white with a deep sky blue center.

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Hydrangea macrophylla Tokyo Delight 2 PRN‘Tokyo Delight’ has an excellent habit and produces copious amounts of blooms.

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‘Tokyo Delight’ bigleaf hydrangea,  H. macrophylla, is a wonderful compact hydrangea that produces beautiful lacecap flowers with large white outer blooms and sky blue inner blooms for an extended period in summer.  The flowers age to a lovely, long-lasting rose color.  It is very cold hardy and blooms reliably every year.  It grows to 4’ tall and 3’ wide in part to full shade in zones 5 to 9. 

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Rhododendron prunifolium PRNPlum leaf azalea is one of our wonderful deciduous U.S. native rhododendrons.

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Native plum leaf azalea’s, Rhododenron prunifolium, striking 2″ orange to red flowers from June into August make this deciduous rhododendron a wonderful addition to the summer shade garden.  The flowers attract hummingbirds.  Plum leaf azalea has delicate, bright green leaves and a lovely upright habit with tiered branching.  It grows up to 8’ tall and 4’ wide in full sun to almost full shade in zones 5 to 9.

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Viburnum plicatum var. tomentosumThe elegant flowers and pleated leaves of doublefile viburnum.

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‘Shasta’ doublefile viburnum, V. plicatum var. tomentosum, was introduced by the U.S. National Arboretum as a cultivar with extra large flowers and a shorter more horizontal habit.  It produces its showy lacecap flowers in May and June, and they are displayed in a unique “doublefile” along the stems.  Its has pretty pleated medium green leaves and produces bright red berries in late July, which the birds love.  It grows quickly to 7’ tall and 10’ wide in part to full shade in zones 5 to 8.  ‘Shasta’ is deer resistant and is a PHS Gold Medal Plant.  I treasure my doublefile for its elegant “wedding cake” habit (see the first photo in the post)—one of the most noticed plants in my garden.

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Lonicera sempervirens 'John Clayton'‘John Clayton’ is the most vigorous and produces the most flowers of any of the native honeysuckle vines.

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Lonicera sempervirens 'John Clayton'‘John Clayton’ native trumpet honeysuckle, Lonicera sempervirens, was featured previously in Woody Plants for Shade Part 3, but I am offering it again because it is such a carefree vine for part shade.

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Wisteria frutescens 'Amethyst Falls'Native ‘Amethyst Falls’  American wisteria, W. frutescens, was profiled previously in Woody Plants for Shade Part 2, but again it is such a wonderful vine as shown by its PHS Gold Medal Plant status that I am including it in this offer.

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Wisteria frutescens Nivea PRN‘Nivea’ American wisteria

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Native ‘Nivea’ American wisteria, the white-flowered form of W. frutescens, is the final plant in the offer.  It is identical to ‘Amethyst Falls’ and produces copious amounts of fragrant white flowers from June to August.  It has fine-textured, attractive foliage and is less rampant than the Asian species of wisteria.  It grows to 20′ in full to part sun (it is not technically a shade plant) in zones 5 to 9.  It attracts butterflies and hummingbirds and is deer resistant.

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I grow most of these plants in my garden so I know you can’t go wrong by adding them to yours!  If you are a customer, click here for details on how to order these wonderful shade plants by noon on May 18.  If not, now you have some plants to ask for at your local independent nursery.  If you want to read about all the woodies I have profiled, here are the links:

Part 1,   Part 2,   Part 3,   Part 4,   Part 5Part 6Part 7Part 8

Carolyn

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Carolyn’s Shade Gardens is a retail nursery located in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, US, zone 6b.  The only plants that we mail order are snowdrops and miniature hostas and only within the US.

If you are within visiting distance and would like to receive catalogues and information about customer events, please send your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.  Subscribing to my blog does not sign you up to receive this information.

Nursery Happenings:  The 2013 Spring Shrub Offer is now in full swing and orders are due May 18.  To read about the plants available and place an order, click here.  The 2013 Miniature Hosta Mail Order Catalogue, containing 34 choice selections of miniatures for shipping all over the US, is now on the right sidebar here, and we are ready to ship.  If you are local, you can use the catalogue to see what miniatures are available at the nursery.  Next up is open hours over Memorial Day Weekend.  If you are a customer, expect an email shortly with all the details.

Facebook:  Carolyn’s Shade Gardens has a Facebook Page where I post single photos, garden tips, and other information that doesn’t fit into a blog post.  You can look at my Facebook page here or click the Like button on my right sidebar here.

Notes: Every word that appears in orange on my blog is a link that you can click for more information.  If you want to return to my blog’s homepage to access the sidebar information (catalogues, previous articles, etc.) or to subscribe to my blog, just click here.

Woody Plants for Shade Part 7

Posted in Camellias, evergreen, Fall Color, native plants, Shade Shrubs, shade vines, winter interest with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2013 by Carolyn @ Carolyns Shade Gardens

Camellia x 'Spring's Promise'Spring-blooming camellia ‘Spring’s Promise’ is available in the current offer but was profiled in a previous woody plant post so I am not describing it here.  However, it is a favorite of mine, and I wanted to include a photo.  For a full write up of this plant,  go to Woody Plants for Shade Part 1.

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My nursery, Carolyn’s Shade Gardens, specializes in perennials for shade with an emphasis on hellebores, unusual bulbs especially snowdrops, hostas particularly miniature hostas, native plants, and ferns.  However, a satisfying shade garden does not consist of just perennials but includes trees, shrubs, and vines.  I provide a quality source for these plants by doing a special offer three times a year. 

I have just sent my first 2013 list to my customers.  To view the catalogue, click here.   However, I thought my blog readers who are not customers might be interested in learning about the woody plants that I would recommend they add to their shade gardens.  And doing an article allows me to add more information and explain why I chose the plants I included so customers might be interested also.

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Camellia japonica 'Korean Fire'Spring-blooming camellia ‘Korean Fire’ has the most beautiful leaves of any camellia.

The offer focuses on winter- and early spring-blooming plants, evergreens and winter interest, native plants, and fragrance.  Included are four camellias, six other shrubs, and one vine.  Six of the plants I have chosen are evergreen, and seven bloom off season, in fall or late winter/early spring.   This reflects  my desire to see gardeners expand their gardens’ season beyond spring and summer to become a year round paradise for them to enjoy.  With that introduction, here are the plants I am highlighting:

Camellia japonica 'Korean Fire'‘Korean Fire’


I included four hardy camellias for their spectacular early (or late) season flowers and elegant evergreen leaves. These camellias, along with many other cultivars, have been selected to be fully cold hardy in the mid-Atlantic U.S, zones 6B and 7A.  Nevertheless all camellias benefit from being sited to shelter them from winter wind, which comes from the northwest.  They also maintain their lustrous dark green leaves in better shape if they are sheltered from winter sun.

‘Korean Fire’ is a Camellia japonica cultivar hardy in our area because it was selected from the most northern range of the species.  It has very showy bright red single flowers in April and May and glossy dark evergreen leaves.  It grows to 10′ tall and 6′ wide in part to full shade.  It was introduced by Barry Yinger of Asiatica Nursery from plants collected in Korea in 1984 and has received the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Award for outstanding plants for our area.

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Camellia x 'April Rose'‘April Rose’ spring-blooming camellia

Camellia x ‘April Rose’ is a spring-blooming hardy camellia with gorgeous plump buds opening to formal double rose-pink flowers in April and May.  It has large glossy dark evergreen leaves.  It is 5’ tall and 4′ wide, growing in part to full shade.  It is part of the April series of exceptionally cold hardy camellias developed by Dr. Clifford Parks of North Carolina.

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Camellia x 'Winter's Star'Fall-blooming camellia ‘Winter’s Star’

‘Winter’s Star’ is a fall-blooming, cold hardy camellia with single pink flowers in October and November and glossy evergreen leaves.  It is a vigorous plant with an upright habit, reaching 6′ tall and 5′ wide at maturity and sporting lustrous dark evergreen leaves in part to full shade.  It was selected for cold hardiness by Dr. William Ackerman at the U.S. National Arboretum in Washington, DC.

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Osmanthus heterophyllus 'Sasaba'‘Sasaba’ holly osmanthus (also known as holly tree olive), O. heterophyllus, blooms in the fall and is beautifully fragrant.

Fall-blooming holly osmanthus‘Sasaba’  is the fifth evergreen in the offer, and I would grow it just for its dramatic, deeply incised dark evergreen leaves.  Its delicious fragrance perfumes my whole hillside in November when it blooms: if you are visiting you can see it on the back hill.  Its prickly foliage repels deer.  It grows 6’ tall and 4’ wide in full sun to full shade.

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Japanese mahonia, Mahonia japonica, is the sixth evergreen in the offer.  It was previously profiled here, but I am including it again because I think it is the most fragrant and best all round mahonia species.

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There are four deciduous shrubs in the offer:

Chaenomeles speciosa 'Texas Scarlet'‘Texas Scarlet’ flowering quince, Chaenomeles x superba, is another repeat.  This compact selection gives you the wonderful early flowers of quince without the lethal thorns and out-of-control growth habit of normal quinces.  For a complete profile, click here.

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Fothergilla MOBOTThe lovely fragrant flowers of fothergilla.

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Fothergilla gardeniiThis is a photo of my unselected fothergilla so I can only imagine what ‘Red Licorice’ must look like in the fall.

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Native ‘Red Licorice’ fothergilla has honey-scented, white bottlebrush flowers in April and May.  It is a new fothergilla cultivar selected for its spectacular cherry red fall color.  It grows to 6’ tall and 5’ wide in full sun to full shade.  It is wet site tolerant,  deer resistant, and attracts butterflies.  It is native to the southeastern US.

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Kerria japonica Golden Guinea_DK‘Golden Guinea’ Japanese kerria, Kerria japonica, produces copious amounts of large, bright gold flowers.

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Kerria japonica Golden Guinea2 apr_LS (1)A close up of ‘Golden Guinea’

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‘Golden Guinea’ Japanese kerria is covered with 2 ½” yellow flowers  in April and May and then reblooms sporadically.  It has delicate, bright green pointed leaves, and its graceful stems are a vibrant green providing great winter interest.  It grows to 5’ tall and 4’ wide in part sun to almost full shade (full sun bleaches the flowers).  Kerria grows in average garden soils, is tough and adaptable, and resists deer.

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Rhododendron arborescens 1-15-13_LS (1)The lovely buds of native sweet azalea, Rhododendron arborescens.

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Rhododendron arborescens 4-27-12_LS (2)The fragrant flowers of sweet azalea.

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Native sweet azalea’s very attractive buds, which are on the plant right now, produce light pink to white very fragrant flowers with showy red stamens from May to June.  Its lustrous green leaves turn a stunning orange to red in fall.  It can grow to 10’ tall and 7’ wide in full sun to almost full shade but is usually smaller.  Sweet azalea is wet site tolerant and is one of Pennsylvania’s hardiest native deciduous azaleas.  It was first described by John Bartram in 1814.

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Gelsemium sempervirens 'Margarita'Carolina jessamine ‘Margarita’, Gelsemium sempervirens, is a vine that I have offered before but its many fragrant, bright yellow flowers, semi-evergreen leaves, and the fact that it is native to the southeastern US make it a very desirable plant.  For a complete profile, click herePhoto courtesy of the Missouri Botanical Garden PlantFinder.

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I grow most of these plants in my gardens so I know you can’t go wrong by adding them to yours!  If you are a customer, see Nursery Happenings below for details on how to order these wonderful shade plants by noon on March 30.  If not, now you have some plants to ask for at your local independent nursery.

Carolyn

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Carolyn’s Shade Gardens is a retail nursery located in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, US, zone 6b.  The only plants that we mail order are snowdrops and miniature hostas and only within the US.

If you are within visiting distance and would like to receive catalogues and information about customer events, please send your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.  Subscribing to my blog does not sign you up to receive this information.

Nursery Happenings:  The nursery is open and fully stocked.  If you can’t come to an event, just email to schedule an appointment to shop.  If you wish to order shrubs, everything you need to know is in the catalogue, which can be accessed here.   The deadline for shrub orders is noon on March 30.  Our Native Wildflower Weekend takes place on Friday, April 5, from 10 am to 4 pm, and Saturday, April 6, from 10 am to 2 pm.  If you are a customer, expect an email shortly with all the details.

Facebook:  Carolyn’s Shade Gardens has a Facebook Page where I post single photos, garden tips, and other information that doesn’t fit into a blog post.  You can look at my Facebook page here or click the Like button on my right sidebar here.

Notes: Every word that appears in orange on my blog is a link that you can click for more information.  If you want to return to my blog’s homepage to access the sidebar information (catalogues, previous articles, etc.) or to subscribe to my blog, just click here.

Woody Plants for Shade Part 5

Posted in Fall Color, landscape design, native plants, Shade Gardening, Shade Shrubs, shade vines, winter interest with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 17, 2012 by Carolyn @ Carolyns Shade Gardens

The bright rose flowers of ‘Wine & Roses’ old-fashioned weigela.

Shade gardens are not composed solely of perennials so two years ago I branched out to offer high quality shrubs, vines, and trees to my customers.  In my second Spring 2012 Woody Plant Offer, details here,  I have focused on plants that are late spring or summer blooming and native to our area.  I thought my blog readers who are not customers might be interested in learning about the plants that I would recommend they add to their shade gardens.  And doing an article allows me to add more information and explain why I chose the plants I included so customers might be interested also.

When it blooms in late spring, our native fringe tree is covered with elegant, fragrant flowers.

Fringe tree is a lovely small flowering tree or a large shrub.

I saw native fringe tree, Chionanthus virginicus, in full bloom in the shady woods of Bartram’s Garden in Philadelphia recently, and it reminded me of how gorgeous this native tree is.   It is loaded with generous amounts of creamy white, fragrant flowers in May and June.  Its medium green leaves turn a good yellow in the fall.  It may produce showy grape-like fruit attractive to birds.  Fringe tree grows to 12 to 20’ tall and 12 to 20’ wide in sun to part shade, although the tree in Bartram’s Garden was in a very shady site.  It is wet site tolerant, hardy to zone 4, and native to the eastern US, including PA.  It is a  Missouri Botanical Garden Plant of Merit (photos courtesy of MOBOT).

 

 Our native dwarf summersweet is loaded with fragrant white flowers in summer.

I have seen stands of summersweet growing wild in New England, and it is a beautiful sight.  However, the species gets quite large and suckers into colonies so the native dwarf summersweet ‘Hummingbird’Clethra alnifolia ‘Hummingbird’, is better for most home gardens.  It has very fragrant, bottlebrush, white flowers in June and July that attract butterflies.  Its  lustrous bright green leaves turn a clear yellow in the fall.  It has an excellent compact habit and produces more flowers than the species.

Dwarf summersweet’s habit is much more compact and attractive than the species, and it produces more flowers.

Dwarf summersweet grows to 2 to 4’ tall and 3’ wide in sun to full shade.  It is hardy to zone 4, deer resistant, wet site and salt tolerant, and native to the eastern US, including PA.  It is a Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Plant,  click here for details (photos courtesy of the MOBOT Plant Finder, for more information click here).


 ‘Nikko’ dwarf slender deutzia is loaded with white flowers in late spring.

‘Nikko’ lining my rock garden path in full shade.

I have offered ‘Nikko’ dwarf slender deutzia, D. gracilis ‘Nikko’, before, but it is such a useful plant that I couldn’t help including it again.  It is covered with delicate white flowers in April and May.  Its fine-textured and neat green leaves turn an attractive burgundy in the fall.  It is an excellent specimen or flowering groundcover for shade.  I grow it in full shade as a groundcover to edge the path at the base of my winterberry hollies.  ‘Nikko’ grows to 1 to 2’ tall and 2 to 5’ wide in full sun to full shade.  It is hardy to zone 4 and deer resistant.  It is a PHS Gold Medal Plant (for more information click here).


 ‘Invincibelle Spirit’ is a color breakthrough for our native smooth hydrangea.

Native ‘Invincibelle Spirit’ smooth hydrangea, H. arborescens ‘Invincibelle Spirit’, is  a pink-flowered version of the wonderful ‘Annabelle’.  It has very showy large pink snowball flowers that continue to bloom from June into the fall.  ‘Invincibelle Spirit’ grows to 3 to 4’ tall by 3 to 4’ wide in part to full shade.  It is hardy to zone 4, tolerant of a wide range of soil conditions, deer resistant, and native to the eastern US, including PA.  It should be gently pruned in late spring for optimum growth (photo courtesy of the MOBOT Plant Finder, for more information click here).                    

A close up of the large and beautiful flowers and leaves of oakleaf hydrangea.

   Native oakleaf hydrangea in my woodland garden at the base of a black walnut.

The fall color of oakleaf hydrangea.

Our native oakleaf hydrangea, H. quercifolia, is the best all round shrub for shade—everyone should have at least one!  Huge, long-lasting, upright pyramids of white flowers bloom from May through July and change to pink for even longer interest.  It has bold-textured leaves with heart-stopping burgundy-red fall color, and cinnamon-colored exfoliating bark—a true four season plant.  I am offering ‘Alice’ native oakleaf hydrangea, a superior form that has larger flowers, better fall color, and very disease resistant leaves.  It grows to 5 to 8’ tall and 5 to 8’ wide in sun to full shade.  It is hardy to zone 5, walnut and drought tolerant, and native to the southeastern US.  For more information, click here.


The pink mophead flowers of ‘Preziosa’ age to a dark maroon.

‘Preziosa’s’ leaves are gorgeous, here they are starting to turn burgundy in the fall.

‘Preziosa’ sawtooth hydrangea, H. serrata ‘Preziosa’, is now my favorite “fancy” hydrangea for full shade so I am offering it again.  I planted mine in the shade of a white pine under a cherry laurel behind a Japanese maple, and it is thriving and loaded with buds right now.  This wonderful hydrangea produces lovely pink mophead flowers from June to August, which darken with age to a gorgeous maroon.  But I may like the elegant leaves more, especially their beautiful burgundy fall color.   The leaves, deep red stems, flowers, and habit of ‘Preziosa’ are all superior to most other hydrangeas.  ‘Preziosa’ grows to 3 to 4’ tall and 3 to 4’ wide in part to full shade.  It is very tolerant of cold temperatures and hardy to zone 5.  For more information, click here.



 The elegant leaves and flowers of native ‘Blue Muffin’ arrowwood viburnum.

Native ‘Blue Muffin’ arrowwood viburnum, V. dentatum ‘Blue Muffin’,  has lovely flat-topped white flowers in May and June that attract butterflies.  Lots of pea-sized very blue berries appear in late summer and attract birds.  The shiny dark green leaves are beautiful all season and turn attractive shades of orange to burgundy in the fall.  ‘Blue Muffin’ has an excellent and useful narrow, upright habit.  The branches are so straight that the Native Americans used them for arrows. 

‘Blue Muffin’s’ blueberry-like fruit.

‘Blue Muffin’ grows to 5 to 8’ tall and 3 to 4’ wide in sun to part shade.  It is deer resistant and grows in a wide range of soils.  It tolerates salt, drought, and walnuts.  ‘Blue Muffin’ is hardy to zone 3 and native to the eastern US, including PA (fruit photo courtesy of MOBOT, for more information click here).

 The flowers of ‘Wine & Roses’ weigela.

‘Wine & Roses’ old-fashioned weigela, W. florida ‘Wine & Roses’, has copious amounts of eye-catching rose-red flowers in May and June that attract hummingbirds.   The flowers are set off to perfection by the glossy deep burgundy leaves whose color intensifies in the fall.  ‘Wine & Roses’ has an excellent habit—you can prune it immediately after flowering to fit any location.  It grows to 4 to 5’ tall and 4 to 5’ wide in sun to part shade.  Although I recommend some direct sun for better flowers, I have seen weigela blooming in full shade.  It is hardy to zone 4, deer resistant, and tolerant of a wide range of soils.  ‘Wine & Roses’ is a PHS Gold Medal Plant, for details click here.


The silver leaves of ‘Moonlight’ Japanese climbing hydrangea.

The flowers of Japanese climbing hydrangea—here the straight species.

‘Moonlight’ Japanese hydrangea vine, Schizophragma hydrangeoides ‘Moonlight’, has very showy 8 to 10” wide white lacecap flowers  in midsummer.  But I really grow it for its elegant silver-painted dark green leaves, which turn yellow in the fall.  ‘Moonlight’ is a self-attaching vine that covers the surface it grows on with silvery leaves.  It reaches 20 to 30’ at maturity in part to full shade—mine is in deep shade.  It is a PHS Gold Medal Plant, for details click here (photo of flowers courtesy of the MOBOT Plant Finder click here).

I hope I have inspired you to order some of these wonderful plants in my offer or search them out at your local independent nursery.  To read the previous posts on woody plants for shade, click one, two, three, and four.

Carolyn

Nursery Happenings: Customers can pre-order woody plants through noon on May 22.  Click here for details.  We have added a third session of our seminar, The Secrets of a Low Maintenance Garden, on Sunday, May 20.  Click here for details. If you are interested in receiving miniature hostas mail order, click here.

If you are within visiting distance and would like to receive catalogues and information about customer events, please send your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.  Subscribing to my blog does not sign you up to receive this information.

Facebook:  Carolyn’s Shade Gardens has a Facebook page where I post single photos, garden tips, and other information that doesn’t fit into a blog post.  You can look at my Facebook page here or click the Like button on my right sidebar here.

Notes: Every word that appears in orange on my blog is a link that you can click for more information.  If you want to return to my blog’s homepage to access the sidebar information (catalogues, previous articles, etc.) or to subscribe to my blog, just click here.

Woody Plants for Shade Part 4

Posted in Camellias, evergreen, flower show, Shade Shrubs, shade vines, winter interest with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 23, 2012 by Carolyn @ Carolyns Shade Gardens

Spring-blooming camellia ‘Pink Icicle’

For years, my customers have been asking for woody plants for shade—trees, shrubs, and vines—in addition to the perennials I sell.  I now have a wholesale woody plant nursery with the quality and selection I needed to be able to offer them at Carolyn’s Shade Gardens.   I have just sent out my first 2012 list.  To view the catalogue, click here.   However, I thought my blog readers who are not customers might be interested in learning about the plants that I would recommend they add to their shade gardens.  And doing an article allows me to add more information and explain why I chose the plants I included so customers might be interested also.

Spring-blooming camellia ‘April Tryst’

The offer focuses on winter- and early spring-blooming plants, evergreens, and fragrance.  Included are three camellias, six other shrubs, and one vine.  Four of the plants I have chosen are evergreen, and seven bloom in the off season: late winter or early spring.   This reflects  my desire to see gardeners expand their gardens’ season beyond spring and summer to become a year round paradise for them to enjoy.  With that introduction, here are the plants I am highlighting:

The buds are just starting to expand on ‘April Snow’ camellia.


I included three hardy camellias for their spectacular early season flowers and elegant evergreen leaves. These camellias, along with many other cultivars, have been bred to be fully cold hardy in the mid-Atlantic U.S, zones 6B and 7A.  Nevertheless all camellias benefit from being sited to shelter them from winter wind, which comes from the northwest.  They also maintain their lustrous dark green leaves in better shape if they are sheltered from winter sun.  For more information on cold hardy camellias for our area, click here.

‘April Snow’ spring-blooming camellia

Camellia x ‘April Snow’ is a spring-blooming hardy camellia with gorgeous plump buds opening to large pure white rose-form double flowers in April and May.  It has large glossy dark evergreen leaves.  It is 5’ tall and 4′ wide, growing in part to full shade.  It is part of the April series of exceptionally hardy camellias developed by Dr. Clifford Parks of North Carolina.


‘April Tryst’

‘April Tryst’ is very similar to ‘April Snow’, reaching 5′ tall and 4′ wide at maturity and sporting lustrous dark evergreen leaves in part to full shade  However, it blooms earlier, in March and April, and has knock-your-socks-off red anemone form flowers.  It is also part of the April series of exceptionally cold hardy camellias.  ‘April Tryst’ was starting to bloom in Charles Cresson’s garden during our recent Winter Interest Seminars, and Charles highly recommends it.

‘Pink Icicle’

Spring-blooming camellia ‘Pink Icicle’ has very large, peony form, shell pink flowers that glow when displayed against the glossy evergreen leaves.  It blooms in March and April in part to full shade.  It has a compact and upright growth habit and was selected by Dr. William Ackerman at the U.S. National Arboretum.

Japanese mahonia, Mahonia japonica

amazingly fragrant flowers of Japanese mahonia

The final evergreen plant is Japanese mahonia, Mahonia japonica.  Aside from being evergreen, this was the most fragrant plant in the Cresson garden during the Winter Interest Seminars, and there was plenty of competition.  In February and March, extremely fragrant yellow flowers on 8” racemes cover Japanese mahonia.  The evergreen leaves are a dark glossy green with a finer texture than other mahonias, and they rarely get damaged in winter. The  glaucous blue fruit in early summer attracts birds.  Japanese mahonia grows to 6′ tall and 3′ wide in moist, well-drained soil.  It is also deer resistant.  For more information, click here.

‘Jet Trail’ flowering quince

There are five deciduous shrubs in the offer, including two flowering quinces.  Now I love the early flowers, beautiful colors, and deer resistance of quince, but it is difficult to fit a 10′ plus tall and wide shrub covered with lethal thorns into the garden.  That’s why I was excited when new low and compact quinces that won’t dominate your garden were introduced.  They are not marketed as thornless, but I can’t find any thorns on mine.  As an added benefit, the leaves remain healthy all summer.

‘Texas Scarlet’ flowering quince

‘Jet Trail’ and ‘Texas Scarlet’ flowering quince, Chaenomeles x superba, are identical plants other than their flower color, growing 3’ tall and 3’ wide in sun to part shade.  They produce multitudes of very showy white or coral red flowers in March, which are beautifully displayed by the elegant branching structure.  The  glossy dark green leaves stay ornamental through the season.  The  yellow fruit is wonderfully fragrant.  Both cultivars will grow well in clay soil and drought conditions.  For more information, click here

Spike winter hazel, Corylopsis spicata

Spike winter hazel, Corylopsis spicata, is the elegant shrub with the unusual yellow flowers that everyone admires in my garden in early spring. Dangling panicles of very fragrant, lemon yellow flowers cover this graceful shrub in March and April before the foliage.  The bold-textured leaves emerge burgundy and age to a lovely blue-green.  Winter hazel grows to 8′ tall and 6′ wide in full sun to part shade.  It takes average garden soils and is deer resistant; for more information, click here.


The lovely dusty blue leaves of native ‘Blue Shadow’ fothergilla.


‘Blue Shadow’ has honey-scented bottlebrush flowers.  Photo courtesy of the Missouri Botanical Garden.

fall color of fothergilla

Native ‘Blue Shadow’ fothergilla, Fothergilla x intermedia, has stunning ornamental attributes three seasons a year.  In March and April, it is covered with honey-scented white bottlebrush flowers.  Its gorgeous dusty blue leaves provide an unusual color and texture for the shade garden.  In the fall, the foliage turns lovely shades of yellow, orange, and red.  ‘Blue Shadow’ grows to 4′ tall and 3′ wide in full sun to part shade.  It is native to the southeastern U.S., wet site tolerant, and deer resistant.  For more information, click here.

Snowball flowers of ‘Cayuga’ Koreanspice viburnum

‘Cayuga’ Koreanspice viburnum, Viburnum x ‘Cayuga’, is a cross between a smaller Koreanspice viburnum (V. carlesii) and the fragrant snowball viburnum (V. x carlcephalum) introduced by the U.S. National Arboretum.   It has the best attributes of both.  In April and May, striking pink buds open to abundant, fragrant, large white snowball flowers.  It has a compact habit with dark green leaves that change to orange-red in the fall.  It grows to 6′ tall by 5′ wide in full sun to part shade.  ‘Cayuga’ tolerates a wide range of soils and is deer resistant.  For more information, click here.

Climbing hydrangea, photo courtesy of the Missouri Botanical Garden.

The final plant in the offer is a vine.  Climbing hydrangea, Hydrangea anomala subsp. petiolaris, is really the best vine for shade with 365 days of ornamental value.  Its lustrous, dark green leaves are neat and attractive all season before turning a buttery yellow in the fall.  In June and July, fragrant 8” wide hydrangea-like white flowers layer over the leaves.  The exquisite exfoliating cinnamon bark provides winter interest.  Climbing hydrangea is self-attaching and reaches 30 to 50′ at maturity in part to full shade.  It is a Missouri Botanical Garden Plant of Merit.  For more information, click here.

I grow most of these plants in my gardens so I know you can’t go wrong by adding them to yours!  If you are a customer, see Nursery Happenings below for details on how to order these wonderful shade plants by noon on March 26.  If not, now you have some plants to ask for at your local independent nursery.  If you would like to read about the other woody plants I have recommended for shade, see Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

Carolyn

Facebook:  Carolyn’s Shade Gardens now has a Facebook page where I post single photos, garden tips, and other information that doesn’t fit into a blog post.  You can look at my Facebook page here or click the Like button on my right sidebar here.

Nursery Happenings: I will be having a native wildflower event sometime during Easter weekend.  Look for an announcement here or in an email if you are on my customer email list.

If you are within visiting distance and would like to receive catalogues and information about customer events, please send your full name and phone number to carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.  Subscribing to my blog does not sign you up to receive this information.

Notes: Every word that appears in orange on my blog is a link that you can click for more information.  If you want to return to my blog’s homepage to access the sidebar information (catalogues, previous articles, etc.) or to subscribe to my blog, just click here.

Woody Plants for Shade Part 3

Posted in evergreen, landscape design, native plants, New Plants, Shade Shrubs, shade vines with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 27, 2011 by Carolyn @ Carolyns Shade Gardens

‘Winter’s Joy’ Fall-blooming Hardy Camellia

My nursery specializes in herbaceous flowering plants for shade.   However, although no shade garden is complete without trees, shrubs, and vines, our local nurseries seem to ignore woody plants for shade.  To fill this gap, I offer my customers shade-loving woodies from a wholesale grower whose quality meets my exacting standards.  As in Woody Plants for Shade Part One and Woody Plants for Shade Part Two, I thought my blog readers who are not customers might be interested in learning about the woody plants that I would recommend they add to their shade gardens.  And doing an article in addition to the customer offering allows me to add more information so customers might be interested also.

This summer was tough on plants.  I lost several shrubs that I planted this spring.  That is why fall is the best time to plant.  The soil temperature is elevated for good root development through December, but new plants don’t have to contend with scorching temperatures, severe drought, or an excess of rain.  The plants that I add in the fall are always the most successful in my garden.

Included in my offering are three evergreen shrubs, five deciduous shrubs, and one vine.  Of the nine plants I have chosen, three are native.  Please read my article My Thanksgiving Oak Forest to see why I think planting native plants is crucial to our environment.  My article New Native Shade Perennials for 2011 explains why I think native cultivars are valuable native plants.  With that introduction, here are the plants I am offering highlighted in green:

The fall-blooming camellia ‘Winter’s Snowman’ shines in the winter sun.

If you have been reading my blog, you know that I love camellias, especially fall-blooming varieties.  There is nothing like going outside on a cold November or December day and being greeted by large showy flowers backed by gorgeous evergreen leaves.  Camellias really light up the shadiest parts of my garden during the time of year when flowers are most appreciated.  For more information on and some beautiful photographs of fall-blooming hardy camellias, see my articles Fall-blooming Camellias Part 1 and Fall-blooming Camellias Part 2.


‘Winter’s Snowman’ blooming in December

In a very shady place on the terrace outside my front door, I have a ‘Winter’s Snowman’ fall-blooming hardy camellia.  At maturity, it will reach six feet.  Its semi-double white flowers glow when displayed against the glossy evergreen leaves in November and December.  It is a vigorous plant with a narrow upright habit.  Although it is fully hardy in our area, I have sheltered it from winter sun and our winter winds, which come from the northwest.


‘Winter’s Joy’ fall-blooming camellia

In a similarly sheltered and shady location outside my back door along the path to my compost “pit”, I have planted another fall-blooming camellia.   ‘Winter’s Joy’ fall-blooming hardy camellia has semi-double, fuchsia-pink flowers elegantly displayed against glossy evergreen leaves in November and December.  It is a vigorous plant with a narrow upright habit, reaching six feet at maturity.  Right now both these fall-blooming camellias are covered with buds.  I can’t wait for the display to begin.

‘Winter’s Joy’ is loaded with buds just waiting to produce its showy flowers, and look at that immaculate foliage.

I really like leatherleaf viburnums.  They are evergreen, deer resistant, grow in full shade, have lovely flowers and foliage, and are big enough to screen unsightly views.  The plants I have in my garden are the straight species Viburnum rhytidophyllum and that’s what I intended to offer to my customers.  However, when I saw ‘Dart’s Duke’ lantanaphyllum viburnum (what a name!), V. x rhytidophyllum ‘Dart’s Duke’, and did some research, I realized it is a superior plant for foliage, flowers, berries, and vigor.   A comparison of the nursery stock confirmed this.

‘Dart’s Duke’ showing its majestic leaves and reblooming to produce some of its very large flowers for fall.

‘Dart’s Duke’ grows to 8’ tall by 8’ wide in full sun to full shade.  It has very large, 6 to 10”, showy white flowers in May and can rebloom in the fall.  The flowers are followed by very nice red fruit.  The beautiful, clean dark green, leathery evergreen foliage is deer resistant and winter tough.  It is a Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Plant for 2012, one of only four plants honored.


‘Early Amethyst’ beautyberry is dispalying its amazing purple berries right now at Carolyn’s Shade Gardens.

‘Early Amethyst’ beautyberry, Callicarpa dichotoma ‘Early Amethyst’,  has attractive pink flowers in spring.  But the real show is in the fall when huge amounts of unbelievably colored purple berries run down the center of the beautifully layered branches.  When the leaves drop, the persistent berries are even more showy though they are attractive to birds.  Beautyberry reaches 4’ tall by 4′ wide in sun to part shade and is deer resistant.  I have grown this plant successfully in part shade for years.  If desired, it can be cut back in spring, but I usually leave mine alone.  Beautyberry is a Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Gold Medal Plant and Missouri Botanical Garden Plant of Merit.

Paper Bush, Edgeworthia chrysantha

Paper bush, Edgeworthia chrysantha, is a rare and unusual shrub that has just been discovered by collectors within the last few years.  However, it has so many great ornamental features that it is sure to become very popular.  Its very fragrant clusters of tubular bright yellow flowers bloom from January to March.  The buds, which form in the fall, are as ornamental as the flowers.  They remind me of the tassels on the corners of Victorian pillows.  Paper bush has an elegant and symmetrical upright, branching habit, growing to 6’ tall in part to full shade with protection from winter winds.  It is an exquisite and rare shrub that is ornamental 365 days of the year in my garden.

The buds of paper bush are ornamental all winter.

The unusual fragrant flowers of paper bush

The flowers of ‘Preziosa’ sawtooth hydrangea start out a lovely pink and mature to a bright maroon.

‘Preziosa’ sawtooth hydrangea, Hydrangea serrata ‘Preziosa’, produces numerous lovely pink, small, mophead-like flowers in June and July, which darken with age to a gorgeous maroon (see link below for photo).  The flowers are reliably pink and don’t turn blue.  The beautiful burgundy fall color of the leaves and stems only adds to the show.  ‘Preziosa’ reaches 4’ tall and wide in part to full shade.  The Hydrangea serrata species is one that thrives in full shade.  Unlike many hydrangeas, ‘Preziosa’ is very tolerant of the cold temperatures in our zone 6.  For a raving review of ‘Preziosa’ and more cultural information (note that the winter protection recommended is for zone 5), click here.

The leaves of ‘Preziosa’ sawtooth hydrangea have already started to turn burgundy.

This photo shows the berries on my ‘Red Sprite’ winterberry holly right now—they get much larger as the season progresses, but the show is already breathtaking.

One of my all time favorite native plants is winterberry holly, Ilex verticillata.  It grows wild all over the island in Maine where my family vacations and is always covered with berries in the fall.  Here in Pennsylvania, my preferred winterberry holly cultivar is Ilex verticillata ‘Red Sprite’.  It produces copious amounts of very large red berries on relatively compact plants that never need pruning.  The birds love the berries too, but they leave enough behind for it to remain extremely showy late into the winter.  ‘Red Sprite’ reaches 5’ tall in sun to part shade and is wet site and salt tolerant, and deer resistant.  All hollies require a male pollinator, in this case ‘Jim Dandy’, for good fruit set.  Winterberry is native to the entire eastern half of North America, including Pennsylvania.


The flowers and foliage of native ‘Cool Splash’ southern bush honeysuckle, Diervilla sessifolia ‘Cool Splash’

‘Cool Splash’ southern bush honeysuckle is a native shrub whose bold green and white variegation really stands out in the shade.  Its honeysuckle-shaped yellow flowers appear in July and August with rebloom in the fall.  ‘Cool Splash’ grows to 4’ tall and wide in sun to part shade.  It is tough, cold hardy, and deer resistant, and integrates well into perennial borders.  This species is native to the southeastern U.S., but a closely related species, D. lonicera, is native to Pennsylvania.  It is one of four plants honored with a gold medal by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society in 2011.  Nan Ondra at the blog Hayfield has written an excellent profile of this native shrub (with many photos), click here .

In late spring and early summer, ‘John Clayton’ trumpet honeysuckle is covered with these delightful tubular yellow flowers attractive to hummingbirds.

I love vines, and one of my first acquisitions was the native ‘John Clayton’ trumpet honeysuckle, Lonicera sempervirens ‘John Clayton’.  It is my most vigorous trumpet honeysuckle vine, completely covering the lattice under my deck.  Its bright yellow tubular flowers are beloved by  hummingbirds in late spring and early summer and  rebloom through fall, forming attractive red berries.  ‘John Clayton’s’ semi-evergreen, bright green leaves remain attractive through the season.  It reaches 10’ in sun to part shade.  It is deer resistant and very low maintenance.  Trumpet honeysuckle is native to the eastern U.S., including Pennsylvania.

I grow most of these plants in my gardens so I know you can’t go wrong by adding them to yours!  If you are a customer, see Nursery Happenings below for details on how to order these wonderful shade plants.  If not, now you have some plants to ask for at your local independent nursery.

For a great video demonstration of how to plant a shrub put together by my cousin, Jay MacMullan, at the blog Landscape Design and Gardening Resource Guide, click here.

Carolyn


Notes: Every word that appears in orange on my blog is a link that you can click for more information.  If you want to return to my blog’s homepage to access the sidebar information (catalogues, previous articles, etc.), just click here.

Nursery Happenings: Orders for woody shade plants will be accepted until  noon on Thursday, September 29.  Click here for the catalogue.  Our final fall open house sale will be on Saturday, October 8, from 10 am to 3 pm.  If you can’t make it because of Yom Kippur or other reasons, remember you can make an appointment to shop 24/7 by sending me an email at carolynsshadegardens@verizon.net.

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