11 Must Have Trees and Shrubs I’m Swooning Over for 2020
We have an acre, how many trees and shrubs can you fit on an acre before shading the whole thing out? Not sure but I think I’ve got room to add at least these… I hope.
GardenGoodsDirect.com has a pretty good selection of plants I’m looking for and so I have a list of “want to buy’s” with them too. They include:
Silver Smoke Cypress Trees (Z 5-8)
I ordered another Arizona Cypress that says it’s only hardy to zone 6 so if that tree gets chilled out than I’m going to hope Garden Goods Direct is right about this one being hardy to zone 5. It looks very similar and could be a good replacement.
Cryptomeria Spiralis shrubs (Z 5-9)
I just kinda stumbled upon this cute evergreen shrub on their site and added it to the list. I’m trying to teach myself to like evergreens, there’s something harsh about them I feel that pushes me away so I’m trying to really search for some I like. It’s got spieling needles and is a generally mounding variety that grows to 6-8ft in 10 years but up to 25 or so ultimitley so I’ll need to really plan out the placement of this one.
Zone 5 Hardy Rhododendrons (Z 5-9)
I’m really looking for some evergreen rhododendrons for zone 5 and they seem to have them. The issue is Rhodies like acid soil so I need to amend for a couple years before I take the dive into these. I had my eye on a yellow flowering variety called ‘Capistrano’.
Winter Red Winterberry Holly (Z 3-8)
I really don’t have many plants with red berries that last through winter so I feel like it’s gonna have to happen one of these days. I bet it’ll look great backdropped by the evergreen screen I’ve designed and have arriving in May.
Bridal Wreath Spirea Shrub (Z 4-8)
It seems like everyone is pushing me to get a spirea but I just feel like most varieties are dull and boring, nothing really pushing the agenda for me. But this one, this one i can do. The weeping nature of it, the white flowers. They even say you can make flower crowns with it and you know how much I like a plant with multiple uses. It’s a smaller plant than I expected from the photos at only 2-3 feet tall according to the site but it also has red, yellow, and orange color in the fall which is certainly another perk.
Doublefile Viburnum (Z 5-8)
Like the spirea, viburnum is one of those plants that everyone either has or suggests or… something of the sort, it’s always getting shilled to me and I honestly find it pretty damn boring. Maybe it’s because it and the spirea or really tough plants that can take neglect and maybe it’s because they get overused. But in my quest to try out these plants I found a viburnum that is unique enough for me to actually want. This tiered variety is a winner. 8-10ft wide and tall with red fall color and berries through the winter, traits that give it extra kudo points.
I’m not sure where I’m going to get these ones yet but they are available in a bunch of places so I just need to find the best bang for my buck.
Autumn Gold Gingko (Z 4-9)
I’ve got a place in the yard picked out and I’ve always wanted a Gingko Biloba tree. Those leaves… what else can I say. The tree gets big (35-45ft), lives long, and prospers in most conditions. (I had to use the Vulcan pun there) Whatever you do get a male tree. I’ve never smelled the fruit of the female variety but I hear its really unpleasant and messy to clean up. The Autumn Gold Cultivar is a grafted male plant.
Kousa Dogwood Tree (Z 5-8)
20-25 feet tall and wide, I’ve already thought ahead for this tree and dug a hole for it in the fall. But I still don’t have one. Those four petaled flowers in June and the dark red color come fall. I’ve been imagining one of these in the yard since we moved in months ago.
Sweetbay Magnolia (Z 4-9)
I wasn’t really sold on this tree until I read about it in James Van Sweden’s book and then I figured, well, I’ve gotta have a magnolia tree. 10-30ft tall and wide with fragrant flowers and it’ll grow in our zone. Might even be evergreen in a lite winter. But there’s also the Bracken’s Brown Magnolia… If I can grow that one instead I might go for it, it just prefers a touch warmer weather so we’ll see. (The Royal Star magnolia is also peeking my interest because it’s a small tree so I can fit it in somewhere and it blooms super early which I’m craving right now!)
Yellow Twig Dogwood (Z 2-8)
These are gorgeous, in winter, but kind of a boring shrub in summer. Either way winter interest is important. I took a cutting of my friends red twig dogwood but don’t know anyone with a yellow twig dogwood so I might have to buy one instead of propagate a friends.
Cornus Midwinter Fire or Arctic Sun (Z 2-8)
Another dogwood like the one above, but this one has a red to yellow variation in it’s twigs.
Alright if you read Parts 1-3, that’s a lot I know. That’s not even the whole list. But it’s a start. I’m worried that by the time I get all of these and plant them I’ll begin to realize an acre isn’t enough room for all the plants I want. But that’s what future dreams are for. I mean in the future we want to build our own house by hand so we’ll see how we find ourselves there and we’ll see how we find ourselves within this full grown garden, plants in and life going on within it.