In the garden
QA couple of years ago we built an arbor and I put trumpet vines on each side. They grew and grew and got way too invasive, so I’ve cut it all down and will be digging up the roots. What kind of flowering vine would be good to plant? I’ve thought about clematis but am thinking I need something that will vine up the trellis and then re-bloom on the old wood. I don’t want to have to cut it all off every year.
AWhat about “Armand” clematis, which is evergreen? Another option would be fiveleaf akebia or Carolina jasmine.
QAre there still disease problems with red tip photenia? If so, any other suggestions for a fast growing and tall hedge row?
AThe leaf spot disease is a problem that is not going to go away on photenias, and for that reason, I don’t recommend planting them. Some other options include holly – “Nellie R. Stevens,” foster or luster leaf — cleyera, elaeagnus, “Chindo” viburnum or “Little Gem” magnolia.
QI’ve noticed that some Japanese maples are currently dropping seeds. Will these sprout this summer or are they carried over until next spring before they sprout?
AWhile not all varieties are equal, most Japanese maple seeds will ripen in the fall and germinate the following spring. Many gardeners who own Japanese maples find small seedlings near their trees and can dig and transplant them.
QCan you please identify this plant? The foliage is 30 inches tall, and the flower spike contains more than 20 bright red, 2-inch flowers; each with five petals and sepals.
AThe plant in question is a summer bulb called crocosmia. Orange or bright red flowers are most common. In full sun, they are stunning. In the shade, they won’t bloom but will spread.
QIs this a butterfly bush? Can you identify?
ANo it is not a butterfly bush but a young or small crape myrtle.
QCan you tell us what this flower is? How do you take care of it?
AIt is commonly called butterfly weed or Asclepias tuberosa. This is the milkweed that everyone recommends we plant for the monarch butterfly. The more common color is a bright orange, but there are now yellow and even pink varieties. They form a strong tap root and so are not easily transplanted, but once established are tough, drought-tolerant perennials. Deadhead the spent flowers to keep them blooming longer. They do best in full sun.
Small crape myrtles can have big flowers.
Asclepias tuberosa, aka butterfly weed, is one of the milkweeds that support the monarch butterfly.