Great Plants for Every Garden Need
Throughout the year, the Scott Arboretum answers questions like “What can grow in dry shade”; “What plants are deer resistant”; “What is a good native shrub”, etc. For all those questions, we have plenty of plant choices at the 2009 Scott Associates’ Plant Sale. It is a fantastic venue for one-stop-shopping. For the last 18 months we have been refining our list of offerings, lining up vendors from all across the eastern seaboard, and working with our suppliers to deliver an assortment of plants which includes 125 different perennials and 150 woodies (trees, shrubs and woody vines). The following are a few of the many fantastic plants that will be represented.
Diervilla sessilifolia Cool Splash?? is an exciting new introduction of the southern bush-honeysuckle. This spreading shrub quickly reaches its mature size of 4′ tall and 4′ wide. It was selected for the bright white variegation on the leaf margins and can be used to brighten up a shady corner of your yard. This native shrub is adaptable to a variety of both soil and light conditions.
Lindera glauca var. salicifolia, the willow leaf spicebush, is relatively new to the home gardener. Like other spice bushes (We are also offering Lindera reflexa at the Plant Sale.) they are resistant to deer. This large shrub has narrow dark green leaves during the summer. In the fall, the leaves turn a dazzling pumpkin-orange. The fall color lasts throughout most of the fall eventually turning to a tawny brown for the remainder of the winter. Also in the fall the tiny green fruits turn to shiny black. The combination of the black fruits with the orange fall color is very attractive. At maturity this spicebush will be 15′ tall with an equal spread. Over time you can prune off the lower branches and plant herbaceous plants at the base like epimediums, Asarum, and ferns.
An exciting new perennial selection of sneezeweed is Helenium ‘Mardis Gras’. Last fall we planted a mass of ‘Mardis Gras’ at the College rock along College Avenue. From early summer and continuing now, it has been covered in flowers. The daisy-like flowers have a raised cluster of black seeds in the center, which the American Goldfinch feed on. The petals are a suffusion of dark orange to light orange. At maturity, this perennial reaches about 3′ tall. It thrives best in full sun. With a little bit of deadheading (removing of spent flowers) flowering will continue well into the fall.
Syneilesis aconitifolia is a great groundcover for the shade. Straight stems emerge from the ground. As the leaves unfurl they look like a dissected umbrella sitting atop the stem. The foliage of this spreading perennial reaches about 12″. Both the leaves and the stems have what looks like cobwebs giving them an added interest. In nursery production, the leaves sometimes go dormant this time of year so while the containers may look a little sparse, the pots are filled with buds and roots which will emerge with a lot of vigor next spring.
Review a complete list of recommended plants for deer resistance, drought tolerance, dry shade, and winter interest by downloading the Plant Sale Handbook. Stop by the 2009 Scott Associates’ Plant Sale to purchase these plants and hear local experts give mini-lectures on these topics and more.