Table of contents:
- Read the previous part of the article: Evergreens in your garden
- Classification of the crown shape of evergreen plants
Video: Composing Evergreens In Your Garden
Read the previous part of the article: Evergreens in your garden
Conifers are the main material for breeding evergreens. Conifers are perennial trees and shrubs, on which not flowers, but cones are formed.
A typical evergreen coniferous is Scots pine, it has narrow wintering leaves-needles, consisting of woody scales. However, not all conifers look like this. Some, for example, shed their needles for the winter.
Classification of the crown shape of evergreen plants
According to the scientific concept, there are several classifications of the forms of crowns of evergreen plants. There are many evergreens, which are so varied in height, appearance, color, growth shape, growing conditions and flowering time requirements, that any amateur gardener can choose plants for their garden and for the goals that you set for yourself. In other words, if you want to make a continuous living fence of evergreen plants, then you need a certain shape of the crown of plants, if you want to close the ugly places in your garden, for this you need to choose a different shape.
Also, do not forget that evergreens are subdivided into dwarf and slow-growing plants, and it is important to understand the difference between them.
Slow growing plants do grow slowly, but after a few years they can get quite tall.
Dwarf plants are plants whose maximum height is significantly less than the height of other representatives of a given genus or species.
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Use of plants
Ground cover plants play a very important role in the garden, they grow rapidly and form green carpets on empty plots of land, decorating the garden, suppressing the growth of weeds. They are valued for their ability to quickly expand in breadth and cover the soil with themselves.
On the other hand, among evergreens there are tall plants that can be used to mask walls or supports, or can be planted as living walls.
For these purposes, mainly conifers are used. These plants are hardy enough and can winter outdoors in the garden.
Overwintering foliage is also preferable on plants that are planted on a lawn in an open area of the garden. Such plants form the architectural appearance of the garden or highlight some of its details.
Conifers can be planted in flower beds and on curbs, but dwarfs, balsam fir varieties Nana and Lawson's cypress variety Minima Glauca, are especially widespread.
These plants are able to partially or completely suppress the growth of weeds, they have good ground cover properties. Low-growing deciduous and coniferous plants, for example, juniper middle variety Old Gold, have the same properties.
The scaly juniper Blue Star can quickly create a beautiful silvery-blue carpet under trees and tall shrubs.
Some plants grow fairly quickly in a spacious area without stands, but in dense plantings this can pose a threat to nearby shrubs. Evergreen dwarf plants and evergreen shrubs adorn the garden even in winter.
Evergreens with a green pyramidal crown, yellow or blue foliage, and a rounded and flat crown remain attractive throughout the year.
Not all evergreens are as hardy, some are delicate and require shelter for the winter, and some of these plants sometimes need to be trimmed. For example, Lawson's cypress Minima Aurea, common juniper Compressa, black pine Gnom, rhododendron Elizabeth.
This western variety Hetz Midget is planted separately, and not in a flower bed or in a border, when they want nothing to interfere with admiring them. Such plants determine the appearance of the garden, in particular, its height. In single plantings, conifers are often used, the branches of which are covered with foliage all year round and indicate that the garden continues to live even when most of the plants look lifeless.
Choose a plant that is decorative, if not all year round, then most of the year. The decorativeness of many separately growing plants lies in the variably colored foliage, fruit or bark, and not in the flowers. It is important to choose a plant of the right size and crown shape. A small bush will "get lost" on a large lawn. A large tree in the middle of a small lawn will not only look out of place, but it will drain and dry the soil and shade most of the lawn. Plants in drought need to be watered and cut if necessary.
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In order for evergreens to look on your site, you need to plant them in certain landscape compositions. We will talk about some of them
Composition of evergreen plants
First of all, it is necessary to determine the type of future landscape composition. Landscape composition is the construction of a garden on a free combination of plants, or their placement in combinations that have the correct geometric or symmetrical composition. If the first type is associated with a natural landscape and is suitable for decorating almost any zone, then the appearance of plantings of the second type in the garden requires a certain semantic load.
Regular groups of coniferous or deciduous species can emphasize the ceremonial character of the main entrance by arranging the so-called green gate, or arrange the compositional center of a parterre flower garden. Conifers are also good in combination with small architectural forms or facades of houses in a classic style.
The following groups are distinguished by size:
- Small groups of 2-4 plants.
- Medium groups - 5-7.
- Large groups of 8-15 plants.
- If there are more than 15 trees in a group, it is called a curtain.
In medium and large groups, the core of the composition and the outer contour are distinguished. The largest and most beautiful trees are chosen as the kernel, and tall and low shrubs are often used to create the outer contour. This combination helps to quickly get a decorative effect: after all, shrubs reach their greatest decorativeness by the third or fifth year of life, while trees - only 10–20 years after planting. According to the structure, the groups are divided:
- compact groups (dense);
- loose groups (openwork).
An example of a compact group is such an exquisite technique as a bouquet planting, when several specimens of the same breed are planted in one pit. Let's say you have decided on the type and approximate size (respectively, and the number of specimens) of the future tree and shrub group. Now it's up to the specific breeds. Plants are usually arranged according to the following principles.
Plant layout principles
The typological principle assumes the use of different types of trees and shrubs suitable for joint growth. The core of the composition can be light-loving species (larch, birch), and shade-tolerant trees and shrubs (spruce, cotoneaster) undergrowth. By imitating nature, you will achieve a natural fit.
The systematic principle is based on the use of representatives of different species of the same genus in one group, which creates a certain artistic unity. You can make a group of spirits with different flowering times. Such a picture will retain its decorative effect from spring to autumn. You can plant different forms of western thuja or junipers in a group - tall columnar plants will create a bright contrast with the open and dwarf forms. This plant selection principle is especially suitable for beginners in garden design.
The physiognomic principle is based on a combination of the appearance of various plants, taking into account the seasonal and age dynamics of their development. Perhaps this is the most difficult of the listed layout methods, requiring the compiler to know the timing of flowering of each plant, the peculiarities of the autumn color of the foliage, and fruiting. But it is he who allows you to achieve the greatest decorative effect.
The minimum distance in groups between trees, especially when planting small-sized seedlings, is one meter. The maximum is equal to the diameter of the crown, it is usually three to five meters. If the projected group consists of three trees, they are usually planted at the vertices of an equilateral triangle, of five at the corners of an irregular quadrangle and one in the center.
When creating a composition of trees and shrubs, try to favorably set off the advantages of each plant. For example, if you plan to use variegated and red-leaved trees and shrubs, it is better to place them in the foreground (along the outer contour) against the background of uniform, dense greenery of the main plantings. And the smooth transition from trees to lawn will help create perennials planted here. Having formed the lower tier of a group of plants such as hosts, irises, peonies, you will add integrity and completeness to the whole composition.
The plant that defines the architectural appearance of the garden attracts attention in itself and serves as a focal point. An accent plant is designed to draw attention to a nearby building, another plant, or a group of plants. No matter what role they play, single trees and shrubs are extremely important to every garden.
Read the next part of the article: Growing Evergreens in Your Garden
Evergreens in your garden:
• Part 1. Evergreens in your garden
• Part 2. Arranging evergreens in your garden
• Part 3. Growing evergreens in your garden
• Part 4. Eating in your garden
• Part 5. Cypress in your garden
• Part 6 Junipers in your garden
• Part 7. Rhododendron, azalea and boxwood in your garden
• Part 8. Pines and yews in your garden
• Part 9. Thuja in your garden
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