By Ted Maro
The use of trees, shrubs and perennials will add variety and depth to your landscape. This combination will bring interest spring, summer, fall and winter. We all know how long our Minnesota winters can last, so don’t hesitate to layer your landscape so it is attractive all year.
Trees can be your foundation to the landscape. They can be used as the focal point, frame a view, screening or simply a backdrop. Ornamental trees, such as a crabapple, can be a food source for wildlife or the fruit can add winter interest. Evergreens can also bring life to your winter landscape and are perfect for creating natural walls for an outdoor room. Trees that have weeping characteristics can be used by water features and mimic flowing water. Ornamental trees, small in stature, are often used in courtyards or by entryways. Trees that bloom are an added bonus to any landscape.
Shrubs add color and structure to your landscape. The colors of the foliage can be green, burgundy, or a bluish-green. The variety of colors will add depth and visual interest. Flowering shrubs can add that little extra punch to make your landscape unique. Shrubs are used to add structure, such as, outlining gardens or framing walkways. The fragrance from a lilac bush paints the picture of spring in anyone’s mind.
Perennials provide a long sequence of bloom time. By using several different perennials, you will enjoy a blooming period in spring, early summer, mid-summer, late summer, and into the fall. They can range in height from a few inches to several feet tall. Ornamental grasses have a wonderful golden appearance throughout the winter months so; wait until the spring to do any trimming back of those grasses. Foliage color on perennials can be green, bluish-green, yellow, yellow-orange or burgundy. Remember, perennials come up every year for a number of years.
The combination of trees, shrubs, and perennials used in your landscape will create cozy outdoor rooms for you to enjoy. The rooms can provide privacy and a feeling of peace and serenity. Using all three in combination will create layers in the landscape from short in stature to tall barriers. Proper placement of plants will highlight your front entry making your home inviting to your guests.
Come in and wander through Pahl’s greenhouses and nursery. It just may conjure up some images of your fresh new landscape. The knowledgeable staff at Pahl’s Market can answer any of your questions. Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day. You can take your time with your landscape and enjoy the ride.