Thursday, 13 September 2012

Fall 2012 Plant Order for the Roof Garden

I pulled the trigger today on my fall plant orders for the red brick building's roof garden.  There were some last minute additions, deletions and substitutions because a couple of items were out of stock, the shipping on one item was three times the price of the plant itself and I needed to meet certain minimum amounts for shipping at a couple of nurseries.  Here's what I ended up choosing.

Most exciting to me was the order I placed for five Osmanthus fastigata

I am decidedly obsessed with plants from the olive family, though it's tricky to find ones that will survive in zone 6.  This plant allegedly does, and I absolutely flip for the fragrance of osmanthus.  Their destiny is to become an evergreen hedge on the left side of the patio and to bloom in late fall/early winter, wafting their fragrance towards me whenever I dare to poke my head outside.

For hedging on the right side of the patio, I ordered a mixture of shrubs and made a last-minute substitution that I hope I won't regret.  The substitution was Hibiscus syriacus 'Jeanne D'Arc' instead of Deutzia x magnifica.  Here's Jeanne D'Arc:

I got freaked out that the deutzia was going to be tiny and take eons to grow.  Plus there was a minimum order amount that I was pretty far from reaching.  The hibiscus, meanwhile, is a large shrub type, not the kind of hibiscus that dies back to the ground in winter.  It is allegedly leggy, so I will need to find it a friend to camouflage its ankles and calves.  What appeals to me is that it's a late summer bloomer (I feel like the garden is lacking in flowers then), plus I was able to find a large size plant (or at least a large size pot!) so hopefully it won't be an eternity before the hedge has some height to it.

The second member of this informal hedge is Sambucus nigra 'Laciniata', which is the elderberry with cut leaves reminiscent of a Japanese maple that I described in my last post:

The third member(s) of the hedge is the Elaeagnus that I also described in my last post, but I got a bit freaked out that the variegation, while interesting, would add an unpleasant amount of yellow to my white garden, so I *also* ordered a plain, un-variegated version of the same olive family member.  Here's the plain Elaeagnus pungens:

Maybe a bit basic, but an effective screen, evergreen, and don't forget those highly fragrant late fall flowers.

The fourth plant for the hedge is going to be my already established Rosa moschata 'Nastarana' (Persian Musk Rose).  I did a little research, and though she's maaaybe 2ft tall now, she's supposed to grow to between 6 and 12 feet:

There's a corner behind the star magnolia's planter that turned out to be much shadier than I'd anticipated.  Two fancy double white geraniums met their Maker there, though the Japanese painted fern that I replaced them with as a (lack of) sun test is doing fine.  For that spot, I ordered a Sarcococca confusa ('Christmas box' or 'Sweet box'): 

It's a shade evergreen shrub that grows to between 2 and 4 feet tall and puts out fragrant flowers in the dead of winter.  We shall see!  (I love the idea of having something luscious to cut and bring indoors in winter.)

The last two non-vining plants I ordered for the roof garden were apple trees.  Yes, you read that right.  In my travels around the internet, I came across so-called "Colonnade" (or columnar) apple trees.  They are basically flowering, fruiting poles, that can grow to 12ft under optimal conditions.

I chose the cultivars 'Red Sentinel' and 'Golden Sentinel', both of which are supposed to flower white in spring and then produce normal sized apples in the fall.  I plan to put them on either end of my white lavender hedge, in order to provide more of a green frame for the sunroom windows.  Fingers crossed that they're gown in pots rather than in the ground, because otherwise they won't ship until the spring.

I'm quite planted out now so I'll post about the vines I ordered tomorrow.

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