Saturday, June 25, 2011

Mazus

Mazus

Mazus japonicus
A low, dense, spreading, groundcover annual, reaching up to 3 inches x 3 feet, that is native from eastern Russia to Korea and Japan; south to India to Indonesia to Phillipines.
The leaves are up to 2.3 x 0.6 inches in size. The foliage is luxuriant mid-green.
The flowers, up to 0.5 inches long, are borne during late spring into early summer over a period lasting 1 1/2 months.
Hardy zones 5 to 9 in partial shade.

Mazus pumilio
A rhizomatous, tufted, groundcover perennial, reaching a maximum size of 4 inches x 3.3 + feet, that is native to New Zealand and southeastern Australia.
The leaves are up to 3.2 inches in length.
The white or lilac snapdragon-like flowers are borne duirng summer.
Hardy zones 7 to 9 in partial shade on moist soil.

Mazus radicans
A fast growing, creeping groundcover perennial, reaching a maximum size of 3 inches x 2.5 feet, that is native to New Zealand. The stems are self-layering, rooting as they touch the ground.
The leaves, up to 2 inches in length, are luxuriant lime-green, turning to bronze-green during winter.
The white ( blotched with violet and with a yellow center ) flowers are borne during summer.
Hardy zones 6b to 9 in full sun to partial shade on moist soil.

Mazus reptans
A very vigorous, creeping, mat-forming, semi-evergreen, groundcover perennial, reaching a maximum size of 5 inches x 3 feet, that is native to the Himalayas. The stems self root as they spread and the plant can take heavy foot traffic.
It looks great between stepping stones or planted under large shrubs and Roses.
The toothed, lance-shaped leaves, up to 1 inch in length, are luxuriant glossy bright green. It is evergreen in zone 8.
The purplish-blue, tubular flowers, up to 0.7 inches across, are borne during late spring into early summer.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 in partial shade on moist, light, well drained soil.
Can be propagated from half hardened stem cuttings during summer and fall.

* photo taken on Apr 4 2011 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Aug 4 2011 in Howard Co, MD

* photos taken on May 8 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Alba'
White flowers, otherwise identical.

* photos taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photos taken on on Aug 23 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on May 8 2017 in Columbia, MD

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Golden Chain Tree

Laburnum

A genus of only 2 species of trees, both native to Europe, that are part of the larger Legume family. Laburnums are poisinous, they DO NOT contain Entheogens and in fact may be fatal poisonous if consumed...do not eat any part of this plant.
That being said...a well grown Laburnum really is a beautiful landscape tree.
They prefer full sun to partial shade on consistently moist, well drained soil. Laburnums also prefer cool summers and especially do not like hot humid nights found in the south and southeastern U.S.. They also respond well to generous potassium fertilizer. Young trees should be pruned to a single leader and feathered ( side shoots shorten and spaced ) to create a strong scaffold. Lower branches should be gradually limbed up and suckers should be removed. Wounds do not heal well so it is best to do any corrective pruning while trees are young. Some trees seed heavily drawing energy away from growth. Deadheading after flowering, is recommended if improved vigor is desired. Young trees should be staked so they don't rock to death.
Laburnums do not enjoy root disturbance so it is best of plant while young. It is also important to purchase trees that are not rootbound since potbound trees are prone to girdling.
Trees are reproduced from seed which germinates quickly if soaked for a day in warm water before sowing.

* photos of unknown internet source




Laburnum alpinum ( Scotch Laburnum )
A small broadly spreading tree native to mountains of central and southern Europe. Some records include: fastest recorded growth rate - 3 feet; 20 years - 23 x 20 feet; largest on record - 53 x 33 feet with a trunk diameter of 4.2 feet; longest lived - 176 years.
The trifoliate leaves are composed of 3 pointed, elliptical leaflets, up to 4 x 1 inches. The foliage is smooth glossy deep green above, smooth light green beneath.
In autumn the foliage turns golden-yellow to bronze.
The pea-like bright golden-yellow flowers, up to 0.65 inches, are borne in drooping racemes, up to 18 inches in length, during early summer.
They are followed by a smooth shiny brown flattened pods, up to 3 inches in length. The seedpods contain poisonous brown seeds.
The dark gray bark is smooth on young trees, shallowly fissured on older trees.
Hardy zones
Hardy zone 3 to 7, use most northerly seed source in cold climates.

* historic archive photo


Laburnum vulgare ( Common Laburnum )
Also called Laburnum anagyroides. A small broadly spreading tree native to mountains of central and southern Europe. It thrives especially well in the British Isles though not native there. Some records include: fastest recorded growth rate - 4 feet; 20 years - 36 x 20 feet; largest on record - 56 x 36 feet with a trunk diameter of 5.1 feet; longest lived - 413 years @ Leiden Botanic Garden, Netherlands.
The trifoliate leaves are composed of 3 blunt to round-tipped, oval leaflets, up to 4 x 1.5 ( rarely over 3 ) inches in size. The foliage is smooth dull to glossy deep green above, smooth light green beneath.
In autumn the foliage turns golden-yellow to bronze.
The pea-like bright golden-yellow flowers, up to 1 inch, are borne in drooping racemes, up to 10 inches in length, during late spring.
They are followed by a smooth brown pod, up to 3 inches in length. The seedpods contain poisonous black seeds. The pods often persist through the winter.
The dark gray bark is smooth on young trees, shallowly fissured on older trees.
Hardy zones
Hardy zone 3 to 8. Unlike Laburnum alpinum, this one has actually been known to grow in south Florida.

* photos taken by Milan Havlis, owner of central Europe's premier plant nursery


'Autumnale'
Blooms again in fall.

'Pendulum'
Slender branches are drooping in habit.

Laburnum x watereri ( Waterer Laburnum )
The hybrid between Laburnum alpinum & L. vulgare; forming a small broadly spreading tree. Some records include: fastest recorded growth rate - 3 feet; 5 years - 13 x 5 feet; 20 years - 24 x 20 feet; largest on record - 36 x 36 feet. Rare in the U.S.; it is known to grow in Washington, D.C. at the Smithsonian Arts & Industries Building.
The trifoliate leaves are composed of 3 pointed, elliptical leaflets, up to 3 x 1 inches. The foliage is smooth glossy deep green above, hairy then later turning light green beneath. In autumn the foliage turns golden-yellow to bronze.
The pea-like bright golden-yellow flowers, up to 1 inch, are borne in dense hanging racemes, up to 12 inches in length, during late spring.
They are followed by a smooth brown pod, up to 3 inches in length. The seedpods contain poisonous brown seeds.
The bark is olive and smooth on young trees, dark gray and shallowly fissured on older trees.
Hardy zones 3 to 8

* photos taken on May 18 2013 in Howard Co., MD

* historical archive photo


'Vossii'
Exceptional long flower racemes, up to 24 inches in length. Flowering is also more profuse. The seeds are sparse making for another plus.

* photo taken by Milan Havlis, owner of central Europe's premier plant nursery

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Prairie Mallow

Sidalcea

A genus of highly underrated landscape perennials, native to North America.
The tender leaves can be cooked as a pot herb or eaten raw.
Most species prefer full sun on just about any well drained soil.

* photos of unknown internet source


Sidalcea candida
A rhizome-spreading perennial, reaching a maximum size of 4 feet x 20 inches, that is native to the southwestern U.S. ( from Nevada to Utah to Wyoming; south to southern New Mexico ).
The 7-lobed, rounded leaves, up to 8 inches across, are glossy green.
The white flowers, up to 1 inch wide, are borne on dense spikes during early summer, sometimes repeating into early autumn.
Hardy zones 4 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on fertile, acidic, well drained soil.

Sidalcea hendersonii ( Henderson's Checkerbloom )
A perennial, reaching up to 5.5 feet, that is native from Juneau, Alaska to coastal southern Oregon.
The deeply 7 lobed, rounded leaves are glossy mid-green.
The bright rosy-pink flowers are borne on long upright panicles.

Sidalcea x hybrida
The flowers, up to 3 inches across, are borne early to mid summer. The erect flower spikes resemble that of the Hollyhocks. The will often rebloom if the first flush of flower spikes are removed as the flowers fade.
The deeply-toothed leaves form a basal clump. The foliage is mid-green.
Hardy zones 4 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on fertile, acidic, well drained soil. Prefers climates where summers are not excessively hot and good winter drainage is a must. It can tolerate harsh climates including that of Calgary, Alberta if planted on a protected site.
Cut plants down to 1 foot in height quickly after blooming ends. Propagation is usually done by sowing seed upon ripening which germinates easily. Older clumps can be divided during early spring or early autumn. Clumps are generally more vigorous if divided every 3 years.

'Brilliant'
Reaches a maximum size of 2.5 x 2.5 feet, with deep rose-pink flowers borne on spikes during mid to late summer.

'Croftway Red'
Red flowers.

'Elsie Heugh'
Reaches a maximum size of 5 x 3.5 ( rarely over 4 ) feet, with fringed, pale pink flowers borne on an erect stalk.

'Loveliness'
Reaches up to 2.5 feet, with pale pink flowers

'Mr. Lindburgh'
Reaches a maximum size of 4 x 3.5 feet, with rose-red flowers borne on spikes during mid to late summer.

'Partygirl'
Reaches a maximum size of 3.5 x 3.5 feet, with very abundant, deep rose-red flowers borne on spikes during mid summer to early autumn.

'Rosanna'
Reaches a maximum size of 4 x 3.5 feet, with very abundant, rosy-red flowers borne on spikes during mid summer to early autumn.

'Rose Queen'
Reaches a maximum height of 4 feet, with rose-pink flowers.

'Stark's Variety'
Reaches a maximum size of 5 x 3.5 feet, with rosy-red flowers borne on spikes all summer long.

Sidalcea malviflora ( Checkerbloom )
An erect stemmed, clumping perennial, reaching up to 3.3 x 3 feet, that is native from southwest British Columbia to the Baja Peninsula.
The shallowly-toothed, 7 or 9 lobed leaves are up to 2 inches in length. The foliage turns to yellow during autumn.
The pink to lavender flowers, up to 2 inches across, are borne spring through fall.
Hardy zones 6 to 10 in full sun to partial shade on moist, fertile, well drained soil.

Sidalcea neomexicana ( Salt Spring Checkerbloom )
A perennial, reaching up to 4.5 feet, that is native form eastern Oregon to western Nebraska; south to southern California to New Mexico.

* photo taken by Mr. & Mrs. Robert G. Young @ USDA NRCS. 1992. Western wetland flora

Sidalcea oregana ( Oregon Checkerbloom )
A perennial, reaching up to 6 x 2 ( rarely over 4 ) feet, that is native to the western U.S. ( from Kamloops, British Columbia to Castlegar, B.C. to Idaho; south to northern California to northern Utah ).
The leaves are deeply lobed on the upper stems, more shallowly lobed on the lower stem.
The flowers, borne during summer on upright spikes, are in varying shades of pink.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on moist, well drained soil. It can be propagated either by seed or division.

* photo taken by William & Wilma Follette @ USDA NRCS. 1992. Western wetland flora

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Giant Reed

Arundo donax
Also called Carrizo. A massive grass, reaching up to 20 ( records is 33 ) x 7 + feet, that is native to North America ( California to southrn Illinois to Maryland and south ). The stout stalks can reach up to 1.2 inches in diameter. A bit large and coarse for the average landscape but can make an excellent fast growing and seasonal screen, esp. in industrial parks. It even somewhat resembles Bamboo in appearance. It spreads from woody underground rhizomes and may become invasive on some sites, but planting in large containers will prevent this.
The blue-green leaves, up to 24 x 3 inches, are borne on corn-like stalks and are evergreen in the Deep South.
The flower plumes, up to 2 feet in length, appear during late summer into autumn.
Hardy zones 6 to 10 ( 5b on protected sites with deep mulch ) in full sun on fertile, moist to wet soil. It can both tolerate temporary drought roots up to 3.3 feet deep ) as well as occasional flooding. It is also very heat tolerant.
Propagation is easy from seed or by dividing the clump while dormant.
In dry areas it may be a fire hazard if dead plant material is allowed to persist.
Deer resistant.

* photo taken on Aug 25 2011 @ Scott Arboretum, Swarthmore College, PA

* photos taken on Aug 25 2012 in Baltimore Co., MD

* photo taken on Sep 6 2012 in Harford Co., MD

* photo taken by Robert H. Mohlenbrock @ USDA NRCS. 1992. Western wetland flora

* historical archive photo


'Golden Chain' ( Golden Giant Reed )
Smaller and much less invasive spreading, only reaching up to 12 x 5 ( rarely over 7 ) feet in height, with mid-green leaves variegated with a bold golden-yellow edge.
Looks great with deep blue flowering plants.
Hardy zones 5 to 9 ( mulch in zone 5 & 6 during winter ).

* photos taken on Sep 3 2017 @ U.S. National Arboretum, D.C.


'Macrophylla'
Broader blue-green leaves.

'Peppermint Stick'
Fast growing but less invasive, reaching up to 12 x 8 feet with luxuriant foliage that is widely striped green and white.
The foliage retains its color as summer progresses.
The bronze flower plumes appear during autumn.
Hardy zones 6 to 9

* photos taken on Aug 1 2013 in Stratford, Ontario


'Variegata' ( Striped Giant Reed )
Similar except for growing only 2/3 the height with foliage that is boldly variegated with creamy-yellow stripes. An excellent architectural background plant for larger gardens. Looks great next to water.
Hardy zones 6 to 10

* photos of unknown internet source


* photo taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA

* photo taken on July 2016 in Windsor, Ontario

* historical archive photo

Verbena

Verbena

Verbena bonariensis ( Tall Verbena )
Also called Brazilian Verbena. An erect, clumping perennial, reaching a maximum size of 8 x 4 feet. Looks great at the back of the border and is stunning as a mass planting. It is native from Paraguay to southern Brazil; south to Uruguay to Argentina.
The toothed, lance-shaped leaves, up to 18 inches in length, are rough and deep green. The leaves are borne on stems that are squarred.
The fragrant, bright purple flowers are borne in flat clusters on stiff, hairy, branched stems from early summer to late autumn. The flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
The rough textured stems are square.
Hardy zones 7 to 10 in full sun on moist, fertile, well drained soil. Pinch stems during mid spring to encourage branching. Very heat tolerant. May be grown as an annual in zones 6 and north and may even reseed.

* photo taken on Sep 26 2013 in Baltimore Co., MD

* photo of unknown internet source

* photo taken on July 11 2014 in Washington, DC

* photos taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photo taken on Sep 21 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA

* photo taken on Aug 24 2017 @ U.S. Botanic Garden, Wash. DC.


'Lollipop'
A moderately fast growing, dwarf compact cultivar, reaching only 2 x 3 feet; otherwise similar to species.

* photo taken on Sep 23 2013 in Burtonsville, MD

* photo taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA


Verbena x canadensis ( Rose Verbena )
A very vigorous, low, semi-prostrate, annual or perennial depending upon climate, reaching a maximum size of 2 x 6 ( rarely over 1 x 3 ) feet, that is native to dry open woods in much of the U.S. ( from Colorado to Iowa to Virginia; south to Mexico to Florida ).
The toothed, ovate leaves, up to 4 x 1.6 inches in size, are rough, deep green.
The flowers are borne in rounded clusters from late spring until autumn frosts. The flowers attract butterflies. They look great in hanging baskets, window boxes and trailing over landscape walls.
Hardy zones 7 to 10 in full sun to light shade on well drained soil that is not excessively wet during winter ( prone to rot from snow melt ). Generally hardy to 9 F, it may be hardier to possibly even zone 6 on a protected site and with winter mulch ( pine boughs, straw or shredded leaf compost is perfect ) . Plants are also hardier if not overwatered during autumn. Heat and drought tolerant. Cut back regularly during the growing season to encourage fresh growth and repeat blooming. Some clones have been reported to survive and even thrive in dry shade as long as it is not too dense.
May be grown as an annual in zones 6 and north and may even reseed.
Most cultivars listed below are hybrids also including V. peruviana.
In the past, this plant was very prone to mildew and spider mites, which would ruin the foliage during summer, however new forms such as the Homesteads are resistant and remain very lush and attractive all summer long.

* photo of unknown internet source

* photo taken on Sep 14 2013 in Columbia, MD


'Amethyst'
Flowers are violet-blue with a white eye.

'Annie'
A long lived, groundcover perennial, reaching up to 6 inches x 3 feet.
The slightly fragrant, lavender-pink flowers are borne mid spring until autumn frosts.
Hardy zones 4 to 8 ( 3 on protected sites with deep mulch ).

'Aztec Blue Velvet'

* photo taken on June 1 2014 in Columbia, MD


'Blue Princess'
Reaches a maximum size of 1 x 3 feet, with abundant, very fragrant, light bluish-purple flowers. The foliage is mildew resistant.

Verbena 'Derby'
Flowers are scarlet-red with a white eye.

'Endurascape Hot Pink'
A fast growing, dense, spreading perennial, reaching up to 1 x 3 feet.
It is a repeat bloomer, with hot pink flowers appearing mid-spring into mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 7 to 10, it has superior heat tolerance and mildew resistance.

'Endurascape Magenta'
A fast growing, dense, spreading perennial, reaching up to 1 x 3 feet.
It is a repeat bloomer, with magenta-pink flowers appearing mid-spring into mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 7 to 10, it has superior heat tolerance and mildew resistance.

* photos taken on Oct 15 2017 in Elkridge, MD


'Endurascape Purple'
A fast growing, dense, spreading perennial, reaching up to 1 x 3 feet.
It is a repeat bloomer, with purple flowers appearing mid-spring into mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 7 to 10, it has superior heat tolerance and mildew resistance.

'Endurascape Red'
A fast growing, dense, spreading perennial, reaching up to 1 x 3 feet.
It is a repeat bloomer, with red flowers appearing mid-spring into mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 7 to 10, it has superior heat tolerance and mildew resistance.

'Homestead Carpet Red'
Vigorous in habit, reaching a maximum size of 6 inches x 5 feet, with healthy deep green foliage. The foliage is mildew resistant.
The abundant, scarlet-red flowers borne early summer to late autumn.

* photos taken on June 10 2013 in Columbia, MD


'Homestead Pink'
Reaches a maximum size of 2 x 5 ( rarely over 1 x 3 ) feet, with healthy green foliage and abundant, bright pink flowers.

* photos taken on June 20 2014 in Harford Co., MD


'Homestead Purple'
Vigorous in habit, reaching a maximum size of 16 inches x 5 feet, with healthy deep green foliage and abundant, rich deep purple flowers borne early summer to late autumn. The foliage is mildew resistant.

* photo taken on July 7 2011 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Sep 29 2013 in Ellicott City, MD

* photo taken on Aug 24 2017 @ U.S. Botanic Garden, Wash. DC.

* photos taken on Oct 15 2017 in Elkridge, MD


'Madame du Barry'
Flowers are deep red.

'Red Devil'
Vigorous but compact, reaching up to 3 inches x 2.5 feet, with thick, luxuriant green leaves up to an inch in length.
The incredibly intense red, tubular flowers are borne late spring through mid-autumn.

* photo taken on June 1 2014 in Columbia, MD


'Sissinghurst'
Vigorous in habit, reaching a maximum size of 19 inches x 3 feet, with healthy green foliage and profuse, bright pink flowers.

'Snow Flurry'
Moderately upright, reaching up to 1 foot in height, with bright green foliage and abundant, pure white flowers borne early summer until autumn frosts.
Even if it winter kills, it often self seeds and returns the following year.

* photos taken on July 13 2011 in Columbia, MD




'Taylortown Red'
Fast growing, reaching a maximum size of 1.6 x 3 feet, with healthy rich, mid-green foliage and abundant, intense red flowers.

* photo of unknown internet source



Verbena hastata ( Blue Vervain )
A perennial, reaching up to 5 feet, that is native to swamps and bottomlands in much of North America ( from Vancouver, British Columbia to Vernon, B.C. to far southern Saskatchewan to Winnipeg, Manitoba to Thunder Bay, Ontario to Sault-Ste-Marie, Ontario to Haileybury, Ontario to Nova Scotia; south to northern California to far northern Texas to northern Georgia ). It is most common in the midwest but endangered in Saskatchewan. In the Windsor/Essex County, Ontario region; it was very abundant in the Canard River Valley, Point Pelee, the Lake Erie islands as well as the Ohio shore during the 1800s. It was also common at Detroit, Michigan during the presettlement era.
The sharply-toothed, pointed, lance-shaped leaves, up to 7 x 1 inches in size, are mid-green.
The blue to bluish-purple flowers are borne mid-summer to mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on fertile, moist to wet soil. Clay tolerant.

* photo taken by Jennifer Anderson @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

* photo taken on Aug 4 2013 in Bayfield, Ontario

* photos taken on Sep 14 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 1 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Sep 23 2016 in Columbia, MD


'Alba'
White flowers; otherwise identical.