Shrubs… where do you begin? Take hydrangeas for instance; do you want blue, pink, pink with white, red, green, white, lacey blooms, tight blooms, cone-shaped, flat blooms or big snowball blooms! Maybe keep it simple and buy a tree hydrangea. But wait, the traditional “Pee Gee” type now has competition. Limelight, Vanilla Strawberry, and Quick Fire to name a few. There is also Little Lime, Strawberry Sundae and Little Quick Fire, smaller shrub types. Is there no end? The best part is I just love hydrangeas in all shapes, colors, and sizes. Why? Because they are the shrub that keeps on giving, blooming from early July to frost with minimal care. Check out our Hydrangea Display Garden next time you visit.
Many people will say “I don’t want that tree or shrub, it only blooms for a week or two”, but the beauty and fragrance many provide for that couple weeks is outstanding. I suggest something like this for early spring. A Magnolia or Daphne, mid-spring Lilacs, rhododendrons, followed by a flowering crabapple or weeping cherry, azalea, Chinese fringe tree, and early blooming hydrangeas, will delight you with color all summer. There are many other options, and I find these all fairly easy to maintain.
When looking for a tree or shrub consider its value for all seasons. Attributes such a leaf color, type of bark, and texture are just some considerations. Does it peel, have a color interest, fruit for wildlife or provide wildlife habitat, flower buds that provide interest in the winter, like fuzzy magnolia buds? A flowering crabapple may only bloom for a short time but the little apples ripen as the summer goes on and provide food for the migrating and winter birds. The grouse feed on my crabapple trees throughout the winter.
The native trees and shrubs are great choices as they have already proven they will survive our unpredictable winters. They also provide food and shelter for wildlife.
Remember trees and shrubs are an investment, providing years of enjoyment. Please take the time to plant them correctly and get them off to a good start. View our planting directions.