Friday, August 28, 2009

Black Alder

Black Alder, Alnus glutinosa, is another tree that has beautiful deep green foliage all summer long. Tolerant of adverse conditions, it is a great choice for wetter areas in the landscape. The pyramidal form of Black Alder will mature to a rounded oval canopy. It is a fast growing tree that will mature to 50 x 30'.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Just can't grow a thing?

Sometimes the solution to the problem of why the tree didn't live is more water or less water. This summer we have had plenty of rain in Kansas City and some landscapers are doing drainage projects instead of designing and installing irrigation systems. However, more often than not, poor soil is also a part of the problem. If nothing will grow and the homeowner is desperate for a bit of shade, amending the soil might be easier than digging a hole large enough to plant a Cadillac.

Products available for amending the existing soil include bales of peat moss, bags of cotton burr compost and bulk compost. Many landscapers take advantage of our custom blend topsoil and create their own mix of bulk topsoil, compost and/or sand. We do the blending according to their specifications and deliver the topsoil mix to the jobsite. Another key to success is adding granular Myke Pro, mycorrhizae, at the time of planting to increase the roots' capacity to absorb more water and nutrients.

However, if you don't like any of these suggestions, maybe you will like one of M.T. Liggett's sculptures.

Learn more about these roadside attractions:
Cadillac Ranch
M.T. Liggett

Monday, August 17, 2009

Legend Linden

By the time August rolls around at a nursery, it is very evident the trees that hold up well through summer. The foliage of Legend Linden, Tilia americana 'DTR 123', is still deep green and glossy.

Included on Iowa State's Community Trees List, the American Lindens' "neat, pyramidal growth habit makes this tree perfect for boulevard plantings."

Legend Linden is cold hardy to zone 3 and matures 40 x 30'. It has yellow fall color.

Professional Evening at Powell Gardens

Professional Evening at Powell Gardens

August 26, 2009
4:00 to 8:30 pm

Silent Auction to Support PLANTS OF MERIT

Evening Agenda:
4:00 Tours of Powell Gardens - Annuals, Edibles, Trees, Production
5:30 Slide Presentation - New Annuals for 2010 or Plants of Merit
6:30 Dinner - Bates City BBQ
7:15 Slide Presentation - Edible Ornamentals in the Midwest or Color in the Landscape
8:15 Closing

Cost: $18 per person (includes admission/program/dinner)
Registration deadline: August 21
Register: contact Emalie Hunt at 816-697-2600 x234 or ONLINE

Co-sponsored by: Hort NetWORK and McHutchinson Horticultural Distributors

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A vibrantly elemental garden

The pathway lets the visitor know that this is no ordinary garden.

Anne was our host for the August meeting of the Lenexa Field and Garden Club. A church
liturgist, the garden reflects Anne's spirituality and our relationships with the elements of earth, fire, water and air.

Stepping stones by local artist Steve Hess are carefully placed in the brick walk that leads to one of the water features.

A favorite of the visitors are the alliums. These spring flowering bulbs are planted throughout the garden. Brought indoors at the end of their flowering season, the cut allium flowers are hung upside down to dry. Once dry, they are spray painted and returned to the garden.

A flowering plant that many asked about is Gateway Joe Pye Weed. It is planted at the bottom of the slope along with Obedient Plant and Turtlehead, other moisture tolerant plants.

One of the most popular plants in the garden is oregano, Origanum libanticum, purchased from High Country Gardens.

The flowers drape o
ver a rock wall by the water garden. Requiring well drained soil, it is placed on a slope in soil that has chicken grit added annually.

Colorful accents are placed throughout the garden. A blue wall is at the back of the garden hiding the compost pile. The arbor over the deck is painted blue-green and even has purple grapes hanging from the overhead vines.

With the colorful surfaces
and well chosen plants, there are no dreary days in this garden.

Another inspiring garden and gardener is the host of the Lenexa Field and Garden Club's September meeting. Join us and see what happened when the homeowners had a glass of wine and looked around their backyard.

Friday, August 7, 2009

A Labor of Love

If you have driven down Kasold Street in Lawrence, you have no doubt noticed a beautiful landscape. Years ago, when Kasold was a two lane gravel road, the home-
owners moved in. Over the years, with more develop-
ment in Lawrence, the road was paved, widene
d and is now a divided road. The expansion of the street brought it and the utilities closer to the residence.

The need to block the view of the road and the sound of traffic has been met with several berms and plantings. The homeowners' son has been working on this project for many years. This labor of love has required truckloads of topsoil and equipment for shaping the berms. Large moss boulders were added. And, the plants started arriving.

There are many layers to this landscape. The
overhead power lines necessitate smaller maturing trees such Pink Princess Crabapple, Bonfire Patio Peach, Vernal Witchhazel, Golden Spirit Smoketree and Tiger Eyes Sumac. Columnar oaks and beech are also included.

For color and structure year round, low growing junipers and arborvitae have been included in the landscape. Ornamental grasses are planted throughout. A grouping of Gol
d Bar Miscanthus is the most recent addition.

Flowering plants include the ornamental trees, Caryopteris, Spirea, Autumn Joy Sedum, Tomato Soup, Rocky Top and Harvest Moon Echinaceas, Russian Sage, Walker's Low Catmint, Lavender and Rozanne Geraniums.

Closer to the residence is a grouping of multi-stem Quaking Aspens. Japanese Painted Fern and Caramel Coral Bells are planted around the base of the trunks.

The gardens are lovely year round.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Japanese Maples - some of the red ones

Yes, it's time for the Japanese Maples with red foliage. I featured the green ones first in hopes that their subtle beauty might be realized with the summer foliage and fall color. But, so many more clamor for Japanese Maples with red foliage...

Tamukeyama is a lovely laceleaf maple with a weeping form that ma
tures 6 x 8'. The laceleaf maples do best with some shade protection from Kansas City's hot afternoons.

Inaba Shidare
matures 6 x 6'.

Red Dragon also
matures 6 x 6'.

Crimson Queen
matures 8 x 10'.

The palmatums have an upright form and larger foliage. Palmatums do fine in sun or shade in Kansas City.

ood is the
most familiar one.
It matures 18 x 15'.

Shojo matures
20 x 20'.