Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Ask not for whom the bell tolls; I can assure you it tolls for 3 rhododendrons, installed at considerable expense as part of a front garden redo about 5 years ago. Try as I may, these shrubs simply will not thrive. They’re not terrible; they’re just not great. The picture above shows them in flower; you can see the discolored leaves and the fact that the branches are not as fleshed out with leaves as they should be. It’s too bad; the flowers are very nice, and long-lasting.
So I brought in my favorite garden consultant, the fabulous Sally Cunningham from Lockwoods, a local nursery, and she recommended leucothoe Rainbow (above), an evergreen with variegated leathery leaves and white flowers in spring. They’ll be going in Sunday. They’ll be a bit puny at first, especially when compared to the full-grown shrubs on either side of them, but if all goes well, they’ll fill out. The wall behind them is not an eyesore in great need of covering, so that helps.
I wonder if I’m becoming a shrub person. My interest in them has grown, especially in hydrangea, viburnum, and another newbie to my garden: pieris japonica.
BTW, If you’re wondering why I don’t have a Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post today, I do: it’s here.