Archive for native shrubs for shade

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: Carolyn’s Shade Gardens is a retail nursery located in Bryn Mawr, PA, specializing in showy, colorful, and unusual plants for shade.  The only plants that we ship are snowdrops and miniature hostas.  For catalogues and announcements of events, please send your full name, location, and phone number (for back up use only) to carolyn@carolynsshadegardens.com.  Click here to get to the home page of our website for catalogues and information about our nursery and to subscribe to our blog.

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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.

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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

Carolyn’s Shade Gardens is a retail nursery located in Bryn Mawr, PA, specializing in showy, colorful, and unusual plants for shade.  The only plants that we ship are snowdrops and miniature hostas.  For catalogues and announcements of events, please send your full name, location, and phone number (for back up use only) to carolyn@carolynsshadegardens.com.  Click here to get to the home page of our website for catalogues and information about our nursery and to subscribe to our blog.

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.

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