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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Outdoor Drama with Blooming Trees and Shrubs

Blooming shrubs and trees are an amazing addition to home landscapes.  Your yard is a living, changing environment and blooming plants refresh and brighten the area as the seasons change.
Coloring Your Landscape
Color in your landscape adds drama, interest and excites the senses and emotions.  Color combinations can evoke tranquility or excitement, or bring to mind your favorite painting or a scene from your favorite vacation. And because you can choose plants to bloom at varying times of year, you can alter your landscape scenery many times throughout the year, simply by your initial choice of plant material.  
Concentrate your color choices on colors you love and love seeing in combination.  And don’t forget that the foliage is a color too. The Palo Brea is a tree that has a lot of character with a green trunk and yellow flowers. Around that tree, you could combine colors by using blooming shrubs like the ruellia that blooms purple or Dallas red lantana.  Another choice is Chaparral Sage that is spectacularly purple or Spanish lavender that also blooms purple with silvery green foliage that would contrast strikingly with the bright green trunk of the Palo Brea tree.  Good design also uses a blend of textures, size, scale and color to make an attractive flow to the landscape.

Microclimate Important to Blooming

Be sure to pay attention to practical considerations as well, not forgetting that the plants will have to live in the area they’re being planted in.  I often refer to this as choosing the right plant for the existing microclimate.  In the example of the Palo Brea, the microclimate is likely one of partial sun because the tree will need to be planted in full sun but has a open canopy that filters the sun so the under-story or mid-story plants (plants that live under the canopy of the tree) will actually have lower light.

Trees & Shrubs That Bloom

Many homeowners want to know what plants bloom when and what microclimates they are suited for to help them choose material for their planter beds.   We have developed a guide to do just this.  The Blooming Shrubs and Trees Guide can be accessed on the web site at www.gardenpro.net.  This guide will assist in choosing the right plant for the actual microclimate so it will bloom in the correct time of the year.  If a plant does not have enough light, it will affect the blooming.  This guide is a partial list of plants that bloom in May and June and that also do well in our arid climate.  Be aware that some of these plants may also bloom at another time of year as well.  For example, a rose bush will bloom in spring and fall.
Some shrubs that bloom in May and June include:  Arizona Yellow Bells, Autumn Sage Red, Cape Honeysuckle, Crown of Thorns, Fern-leaf Lavender, Hibiscus, Oleander, Orange Jubilee, Petite Pink Oleander, Pomegranate, and Spanish Lavender. 
Some trees that bloom in May and June include:  Leather-leaf Acacia, Willow Acacia, Shoestring Acacia, Palo Blanco, Orchid Tree, Blue Palo Verde, Hybrid Palo Verde, Foothills Palo Verde, Palo Brea, Desert Willow, Jacaranda, Feather Bush, Desert Museum, Texas Ebony, Texas Honey Mesquite, Chilean Mesquite, Velvet Mesquite, Yellow Oleander and Vitex (Chaste Tree). 
So, refresh your home landscape with blooming shrubs and trees.  Choose colors you love and enjoy your outdoor living.

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