Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show: Falling for shrubs
Fall is just a spectacular time of year with the colors of trees changing and the nip in the air (which seems rather cold this week!) As I mentioned in my radio show, I had tried to book a B&B and found them all filled up around the state throughout October. At least the ones I could reasonably afford!
My mind had been on the fall colors which got me thinking about other sources of color besides Maples and Burning Bush, which I have in my front yard.
A new zone 5 Viburnum that’s worth a look see is called ‘Brandywine’ from Proven Winners. The green berries turn vivid shades of pink and blue while the glossy leaves become a dark maroon-red. It grows to 6 feet tall and prefers full sun.
Consider the Itea virginica ‘Little Henry’. This shrub is normally rather large but ‘Little Henry’ grows to only 3 feet tall, has abundant lightly scented unusual white flowers that remind me of sparklers in the summer and foliage that turns fiery in the Fall.
Another Fall beauty is either loved or hated. Virginia Creeper – maligned or marveled over – it’s foliage is definitely a statement. The vine is a, shall we say, vigorous grower.
It’s a fast grower, hardy to zone 3 and salt tolerant. Don’t let the unnamed native cultivar grow on your specimen trees. It will climb them, casting shade on their leaves, depriving them of needed sunlight. However, this is stunning growing on old homes and arbors! It also tolerates shade. It also can be mistaken for poison ivy! The difference is that Virginia Creeper has 5 leaflets while poison ivy has 3 and IT gives you a rash, the creeper won’t.