Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Stylin' in the Snow

How miserable is a garden in the middle of January
Where every plant you visit is dormant, dead or dreary.
It's the evergreen plants and ones that flower
That cheer you up when you're feeling sour.

Rhododendron 'Ebony Pearl'
For example, this Rhododendron 'Ebony Pearl' has dark, luxurious foliage all year round, but most appreciated this time of year. And, it sailed through last winter when the temperature plummeted down to 15 degrees!

Witch Hazels (Hamamelis intermedia) are in peak-bloom right now. Some little critter ate half the bark around the base of this tree two years ago so it hasn't been growing very much. I wrapped some breathable fabric around the base and it seems to be recovering.

Few things I love more than an evergreen plant that doesn't look like it's supposed to be evergreen. This palm leaf raspberry is one of those plants, although perhaps not completely hardy for the NW (it's doing OK this winter though!).

My Helwingia chinensis (above) really stands out as a broadleaved evergreen this time of year. It will grow little berries that look like ladybugs in the center of its leaves.

Finally, I'm horrible at remembering plant names but as long as I have Google all I have to do is type in everything I know about the plant, such as "Chile native red flowers evergreen", and an image search will just about always give me what I'm looking for. That's how I know this is a Crinodendron hookerianum.

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