Archives for July 2017

Small Space Shrubs, You Might Not Know How Great They Are.

There are so many shrubs to chose from when you are landscaping and sometimes it can be overwhelming to sort out the numerous varieties and pick the right plant for the right place. There are many small shrubs that you already know about, such as Flirt Nandina, Creeping Gardenia, Buzz Butterfly bush, but below are some great new selections that can be used for smaller spaces, and a lot of these varieties you won’t find anywhere else!

Marge Miller Camellia
This is the first prostrate camellia! We are excited about this introduction because it is so versatile. It can be used as an evergreen groundcover plant, or trained on a stake to be a weeping camellia. It reaches only 1 foot tall and 3-4 feet wide. Beautiful soft pink flowers cover this plant in late fall. Marge Miller Camellia would look great spilling over walls. Also use it as a focal point on a stake surrounded by spring and summer blooming shrubs such as Crimson Fire Loropetalum, Drift Roses, or Creeping Gardenias. This camellia would do great in a container either spilling over the edge or staked with annuals around the base. Just remember that camellias prefer a partially shaded environment.

Shi-shi Gashira Camellia
This camellia makes a great foundation shrub for that space that gets a little morning sun and is shaded the rest of the day. It stays evergreen and then in the fall it will be covered with semi-double rosy-pink flowers. Shi-shi Gashira gets 4-5 feet tall and 4-5 feet wide. Use it as a foundation shrub and combine it with other shade loving lower growing plants such as Golden Dragon Plum Yew (details below), Hellebores, Autumn Ferns, and Hostas.

Golden Dragon Plum Yew
A designer favorite for shady gardens. This new introduction combines the interesting texture of the yew family and has yellow foliage! Golden Dragon is evergreen and stays low only growing to 2-3 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide and will brighten up shady garden areas. Combine this plant with Camellias, blue Hydrangeas and other shade loving plants. Golden Dragon would also look good with Cast Iron Plant, or Coral Bells with burgundy foliage. It can also take some sun, so it is not restricted to the shade garden.

Cecil Alice Aucuba
Another new introduction that will brighten up a shade garden. This Aucuba only reaches 2-3 feet tall and gets 3-5 feet wide. Aucubas prefer to grow in a very shaded environment so combine this plant with Cast Iron plant, Ferns, Hostas, Hellebores, and weeping Japanese Maples.


Enduring Summer Crape Myrtle

We all love Crape Myrtles for their endless summer flowers. Enduring Summer is a dwarf variety with bright red blooms that last all summer. This Crape Myrtle would look great planted in groups or use one or three together to provide a splash of color among some evergreen shrubs. Enduring Summer can take full sun and is fairly drought tolerant once established. Definitely a sun loving, low maintenance addition to the landscape. Combine this Crape Myrtle with yellow foliage plants such as Fire Chief Arborvitae, Kaleidoscope Abelia, Gold Mop Cypress and you will get a stunning display.

Princess Kylie Crape Myrtle
Another great new dwarf Crape Myrtle. This one has magenta pink flowers and gets 4-5 feet tall and 4-5 feet wide. Princess Kylie would be great in the middle of a border with taller shrubs such as Cleyera or Hollies behind it then shorter shrubs such as Crimson Fire Loropetalum, Kaleidoscope Abelia, dwarf Gardenias, or dwarf Encore Azaleas in front. Knock-Out roses have become so popular and sometimes we just want to use a different shrub than a Knock-Out, so the dwarf Crape Myrtles are perfect.



Holmstrup Arborvitae
At long last there is an option for an upright accent plant that doesn’t get too tall! Holmstrup Arborvitae gets 5-7 feet tall and only 2 feet wide so it would be perfect for an accent plant at the corner of a house or where you need a little privacy, but don’t have a very wide landscape bed. Arborvitaes have great texture and we love to combine these plants with other sun loving leafy evergreens such as Gardenias, Hollies, Encore Azaleas, Loropetalum, Cleyera, Indian Hawthorns, or Distylium.

15 Pet Friendly Houseplants

Pets are part of the family! We want to keep them safe and healthy. At the same time, we want our indoor decor to be warm, inviting, and full of life.  Plants add so much to our indoor spaces. Through cleaning the air to living decor, houseplants should be beautiful and pet safe.  Here are 15 safe houseplants that can add life and drama to your decor.

1. Spider plant – Super easy and lovely in any room in your home.. Not only are they easy to care for, but they also grow well in low-light conditions and can help to clean the air in our homes.
**Spider plants are air purifying plants and safe for dogs and cats

2. African violet – Add an African Violet to a sunny spot and water when needed, and you will have perky flowers off and on for the entire year.

3. Palms – There are tons of different types of palms, and they make excellent indoor plants that are safe for cats and dogs. Areca, bamboo palm, parlor and ponytail are some of the most common.

4. Bamboo – Bamboo plants are not only one of the best pet friendly house plants, they add great drama and are easy to care for.

5. Boston fern – Garfield the cat made it very clear that Boston Ferns are non-toxic. Beautiful in a hanging basket or container, these ferns add an airy feel to a well lit area.  Ferns that are also safe are Maidenhair and Bird’s Nest.

6. Burros tail succulent (Sedum morganianum) – Even if your cat likes to eat plants, they may like to play with the little “tails” that occasionally fall off.  Burros tail succulents are safe, but when it comes to ensuring that other succulents are pet friendly house plants, it can be hit or miss. So make sure to search for each specific variety of succulent plant you grow.

7. Haworthia succulents – Cool looking, easy care, and pet friendly, even if they eat the leaves. (Which they probably won’t, but just in case)

8. Cast iron plant – The cast iron plant definitely lives up to it’s name; it’s one of toughest house plants out there. Not only are they beautiful, but they will thrive in just about any low or bright light room of the house. 

9. Bromeliads – Pet friendly and pretty! Bromeliads add color all year round in a sunny/part sunny spot in your home.  This is especially nice during the winter blahs.

10. Phalaenopsis orchids –  Orchids are not only safe, but the flowers make a beautiful edible garnish to an upscale meal.

11. Christmas cactus – Pretty much only available at Christmas time, snap up one of these pet friendly plants 

12. Peperomia – Super easy to grow, non-toxic, and there are lots of varieties. These pretty little leaves look great in a hanging basket or in a dish garden.

13. Prayer plant – Prayer plants are easy to grow and look great in a dish garden. The leaves tend to close up at night like praying hands.

14. Swedish ivy – Pet safe and look really pretty in a hanging basket.

15. Air Plants – Stash a few air plants around your home in a terarrium, picture frame, or just hang them from a fixture to add a little super easy care life to any area.