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Friday, October 5, 2018
Posted By: Arts Nursery Staff in Fall Gardening

I think it is safe to say that all of us plant our gardens with a vision in mind that it will be beautiful twelve months of the year, only to find that as summer passes, so does the beauty we so enjoy. So off we go to our favorite nursery to add something that will help our garden at that very moment. If you could add shrubs or small trees that serves two purposes at one time, you would be making great use of the space in your garden, no matter the size. Today, I am talking about plant color and plant contribution to wildlife. This idea of plants with two jobs easily translates to pots too!

The following is a brief list of plants that add interest to your garden for more than one reason or season!

Deciduous Shrubs

Deciduous shrubs can stand alone or act as a low to mid-size plants in a mixed garden. They make wonderful backdrops to other lower growing shrubs, low growing evergreens, perennials, and grasses. They also carry the eye easily up to the next tier of your garden which can be your taller shrubs, trees, perennials, and ornamental grasses; thus adding depth. And, finally, seeing bulbs peek out underneath them in the spring is an easy way to put a smile on your face and let you know spring is just around the corner.
Cotinus Golden Spirit

Cotinus coggygria 'Gold Spirit'

Although it is hard for me to pick a favorite plant in the garden, this come close. This is the gold leafed form of the more commonly used Purple Smoke Bush. I absolutely love this shrub for many reasons. All gardens should have colored foliage included in their design. Gold foliage catches the eye like a lit candle on even the dreariest of days. For a deciduous shrub, this plant is five stars. It holds its color faithfully throughout the season, not burning at all in the heat of summer. It has incredible versatility when it comes to how big you want it to be and takes to pruning very well. Don’t be afraid to cut it back hard in the late fall or early spring . . . and try lifting it off the ground as seen in the picture to the left, to show its beautiful branching. Even bare, the shape of this versatile shrub is interesting, especially as it ages. It has its best color in full sun and is drought hardy once established. And finally, it puts on a show of incredible color in the fall.
Cotinus Golden Spirit

Plant with a dark needled low growing pine such as ‘Pinus thunbergii ‘Thunderhead’

Pinus thunbergii Thunderhead

Perennials and Grasses

Fall perennials bring such varied color and height to our late season gardens and can be combined in eye catching combos. In addition to this, these plants have a very important second use if you can delay cleaning your garden beds for just a short while …. These plants will feed your birds. This is becoming increasingly more important as green space disappears. Here are just four of the many perennials and grasses that combine beauty and usefulness:

Rudbeckia fulgida 'Goldstrum' combined with Aster asperulus

Commonly called Black Eyed Susans, Rudbeckia comes in all sizes from the 5’ tall Rudbeckia Herbstonne to the 1’ high Rudbeckia Little Goldstar. Rudbeckia Goldsturm is seen here. There are also several Rudbeckias that are considered annuals in our part of the world that offer even more color choices than gold. This hard-working plant provides weeks of color in our fall garden, lighting up a corner on a dull day. It thrives in full sun and requires average moisture to be at its best. It is one of the most tried and true plants out there for a reason. Any aster cultivar will work its magic. The colors range from whites, to shades of pink, to shades of purple. They also bloom for weeks and come in varying heights. Everything you need to brighten your fall garden in one neat package
Aster & Rudbeckia

Echinacea combined with Pennisteum

Echinacea was perennial plant of the year in 2008, and has never looked back. From the days of pink and white flowers only, the varieties have expanded to a multitude of colors to satisfy every palette. It is a bold, strong stemmed beauty that loves the sun. Long before the birds are interested, the butterflies will enchant you as they feed. It looks spectacular on its own or combined with ornamental grasses, such as Pennisetum. This grass also has many cultivars and sizes to choose from and provides interest long into the fall months with its attractive buff coloring
Pennisetum & Echinacea

Deciduous Shrubs

Hydrangea quercifolia - Oakleaf Hydrangeas

We are always on the search for plants that do well in shade to part shade. This shrub does all we can ask for in a shrub in spades. This is a plant with presence! In the early part of the year, it is dormant, showing deeply rich red- brown exfoliating bark. The leaves unfurl to be large, deeply-lobed and oak-like in shape, with a very thick, rough texture. The flowers are grape like clusters starting a rich creamy white or pink depending on the variety. Finally, the show finale is its deep red to burgundy leaf color in the Fall. It is slow to growbut well worth the wait. This hydrangea loves to grow in morning sun and afternoon shade, or all-day dappled sun. The top photo is Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Snow Queen’. The third photo below shows the leaf colors in rich reds and burgundies that so put on a show every year.

Hydrangea quercifoliaHydrangea quercifolia fall colour

I love this time of year in the garden, but it is impossible to list even a small percentage of the incredible plants available to you. I encourage you to come in to Art’s Nursery and look around… ask for help. We are always happy to talk to you about our plant selection and what we can do to help you complete your garden vision.

Photos Courtesy :
Jo Lester
www.inthegardenbc.com
 


Friday, October 5, 2018
Posted By: in Fall Gardening
Yes! It’s a thing! At Art’s Nursery, we are currently carrying 2 cover crops for your garden that can be planted NOW for maximum benefit for your soil in your garden.

Green Manures are new ways of adding no chemicals to your garden soil to add benefits of nitrogen, and more for soil benefit! We have a mix (in short supply) of Field Rye and something special called a Rejuvenation Mix, both in 2 kg weights.
Fall Rye

But what’s the difference? Fall Rye does many things for our soil. It over time (worked into the soil) acts as compost, but due to its soil and root structure, it helps in preventing soil erosion, and overtime assists in the growth of beneficial fungi, and absorption of excess nitrates. Prefect for the diligent home gardener who composts, or adds great compost to your soil. Fall Rye offers Nitrogen, which is important in the building of plant proteins, important in the growth and development of vital plant tissues and cells like the cell membranes and chlorophyll.
Rejuvenation Mix

Our Rejuvenation Mix is slightly different, because it has more added benefits inside! While it has Fall Rye included, it also has the benefit of Winter Wheat and Fall Peas. The Winter Wheat suppresses weeds, whereas, Field peas still fixes nitrogen into the soil. But the awesome thing about winter wheat as it takes up excess nitrogen when planted in an area of concern, so it’s the perfect balance for a new home gardener!

Thursday, September 21, 2017
Posted By: Rebecca van der Zalm in Fall Gardening

While anytime is a good time to plant, Fall is particularly rewarding because of the immediate results. It’s a time when what you see is what you get. Leaves are changing colour, berries are beaming, summer flowers are still hanging around and an entirely new plant palette gets the spotlight.

Fall Planter Collage

Fall plantings have a couple of benefits.

Benefits of Fall Planting

First, it’s a great time to get Trees, Shrubs and Perennials planted so that they get an extra couple of months of rooting before they go dormant for the winter. Then in Spring, their roots are established and they are ready to give you a beautiful Spring show. If you wait to plant in Spring, you reduce the risk of winter damage, but your plant will sit there for a couple of weeks or months while it establishes its roots. Planting now gives you a head start.

Second, you get instant gratification because you are planting for right now, not the future. This is particularly true for container plantings, front door décor and your Thanksgiving and Halloween decorating.

Third, it gives you motivation to clean-up the summer stuff that just seems to accumulate in the yard, or on the deck, and gives everything an attractive seasonal refresh. We all need that clean-up kick start... don't we :)

Stuff Them In

In a lot of ways, Fall Planters are easier and more gratifying because we don’t have the guilt and the angst about a plants long term care and health. Simply stuff as many as you can into a planter to make it yell… LOOK AT ME – I’M BEAUTIFUL!

By the time the plants wonder what hit them and why they don't have any room to grow, it will be nearly November and you can redo your planters with attractive stems, berries and colourful winter greens for the Holiday season. For perennials and shrubs you choose, plant them in the garden now or wait until Spring. When the frosts hit, have no mercy and just toss out the seasonal annuals and colour.
Mono Planter Using Mostly Pansies

Mono-Plantings

There are a couple of ways to create Fall planters. The easy way is to mono-plant. Fill your planter with the same plant. Mass for effect. Pack them in tight. The grouping will create interest because of its mass and similar colour palette. Odd numbers work. Try planting 1, 3 or 5 of the same plant in a pot. This style particularly attractive with grasses, mums and perennials like Heuchera.

Thriller, Filler, Spiller

The other way is to follow the traditional thriller, filler, spiller model.

Thrillers

To start, put something big in the middle that is the attention grabbing, dominant thriller. Ideal fall plants include: grasses, conifers, upright sedums, and Japanese maples just to name a few. Mums make good thrillers, but expect to haul them out when they are finished blooming or get opened up by the weather. Scale of planting is important. Try to establish a ratio of 1/3 planter height and 2/3 plant height. In other words, the thriller should be taller than the planter. This is not a rule, it just tends to look good.
Great Plants for Fall Planters - Thrillers

Fillers

Next, add the fillers. These are small to medium sized plants that accent the thriller. Usually fillers are planted around the thriller in odd numbers, for example 3,5 or more depending on the size of your planter. Excellent fillers include Pansies, Violas, Dusty Miller, Ornamental Cabbage or Kale, Decorative Peppers, Heucheras, Berry Plants Like Wintergreen, Bud Blooming Heathers and even mid-sized grasses. Two grasses that are always extremely popular are Carex 'Evergold' and Black Mondo grass. A few other fall favourites include windflowers (Anemone) and Dark Leaved Euphorbias like 'Blackbird'. Virtually anything can work as long as it doesn’t take too much dominance from the Thriller.
Don't forget to add non-living things to your planters as well. Gourds and Pumpkins make excellent additions to nearly every fall container.
Great Plants for Fall Planters - Fillers

Spillers

The spillers are smaller, pendulous or trailing plants that cascade over the edges of your planter. Ivy is an easy answer, as are trailing sedums or a classic favourite, Golden Creeping Jenny, also known as Lysimachia. These look good when asymmetrically. For example, only on one side of the planter.
Great Plants for Fall Planters - Spillers

If you find the height of your planter lacking, add something tall. For example a tall grass, corn stalks, or curly twiggy branches. It's a look that just seems to fit the season.
Some of my favourite plants for fall planters include:
 

Thrillers Fillers Spillers
Japanese Maples Mid-Sized Grasses Ivy
Trailing Grasses
Yews / Boxwoods Pansies / Violas Creeping Jenny
Lemon Cypress Ornamental Cabbage / Kale Trailing Sedums
Tall Upright Grasses Ornamental Peppers  
Upright Sedums Bud Blooming Heathers  
Mums Heucheras  
Sunflowers
Blueberry Plants (Colourful Foliage & Stems)
Winter Green (Gaultheria)  
Twigs, Sticks & Stems Dusty Miller  
  Euphorbias
Pumpkins & Gourds
 

Bulb Bonus Points

For bonus points, drop some spring blooming bulbs in your planters so you have an extra season on interest in the early spring! Maybe some Winter Aconites, Crocus, Snowdrops or even a few early blooming Daffodils!

So what are you waiting for? The temperatures are cooler and the rains have returned. Now is the time to plant up your fall planters! If you’re strapped for time, give one of our folks a call and we can have something gorgeous planted up for you.

Cheers... Rebecca


Saturday, September 13, 2014
Posted By: Laurelle Olfdord-Down in Fall Gardening

I’ve noticed the almost ghostly rising of the fog on the golf course while driving by at night and the other day…gasp, I had to put on a sweater in the evening. Fall is just right around the corner though I am holding out for a few more luxuriously warm September days. September is usually pretty busy with harvesting if you grow ‘em and perusing farmer’s markets if you don’t. Fasten your seatbelts folks here is the list:

Fall Gardens

Lawns

You can aerate and apply a fall fertilizer to your lawn. Don’t apply fall fertilizer if you lawn is dormant (beige), that will not help, water however, will. Now is also a good time to apply beneficial nematodes if you have a problem with grubs or weevils. You can also turf, renovate, over seed and of course mow, the good news about all that work is that we CAN do it, unlike the folks in Southern Alberta because they have SNOW – for real. This is a great time for your lawn, this is the time of year when your lawn really takes root! It is a somewhat smaller window of opportunity than spring to do all that lawn work, so get cracking.

Trees With Fall Colour

Trees and shrubs

In the Pacific Northwest, fall is another great window for planting! The air is cooler, the ground is still warm and Mother Nature usually helps a bit with the watering. It's a great time to add plants with fall colour. Some of our favourites include Japanese Maples, Acers (Maples), SweetGums, Katsuras and Persian Ironwoods. A few shrubs with nice fall colour include blueberries, fothergilla, burning bush and oakleaf hydrangeas.

You can do a small bit of pruning and deadheading of trees and shrubs removing the dead, damaged and diseased branches but leave the main pruning till the winter when your trees and shrubs are dormant, ditto for moving trees and shrubs.

Fall Bouquets

Garden beds

Weed, deadhead, clip back and generally tidy…but not too much. I know I sound like a broken record but native pollinators next in the hollowed out stems of perennials, on sandy type soils and on South facing slopes. It is a great time to add new plants to the garden but wait a bit towards the end of the month for perennial divisions. Don’t forget to bring some colour in to the house; Black-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia hirta) and cuttings from my Oriental Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides) are my go-to early fall bouquets.

Fall Baskets

Planters and hanging baskets

Check drainage in your perennial and evergreen planters. Continue to water and fertilize your annuals and hanging baskets. You‘ll get a few more weeks out of them yet! We have a very cool fall hanging basket class coming your way if you are interested. Once your summer hanging baskets have had the biscuit, don’t toss them, just cut off the greens and stick them in the back yard till you are ready to fill them full of evergreen boughs for Christmas. The root mass acts as a kind of oasis and is great to keep the branches in place!

If you have some gaps in your all season planters, you can fill with pansies, kale (you can eat it when you are tired of looking at it) and other fall and winter colour. I do like to wait until it gets a bit cooler so my Mum’s don’t blow (a horticulture term meaning bloom out in one short period…not teenager slang) and my Pansies don’t stretch out and flop over.

Ponds

It's a busy time for you coming up with the leaf drop! Good idea to put a bit of a net if you have a smaller pond to catch the leaves. Towards the end of the month you can maybe scoop out the annual floaters like water hyacinth. Do some general tidying each week to save you a big weekend job come October.

Harvest Vegetables

Veggie gardens

Harvest, harvest and harvest…weed a little too. There are a few things you can still get in the ground for a fall/winter crop like some lettuces. You can plant Garlic towards the end of the month now too!!!

Plant Flower Bulbs

Bulbs!!!!!

Be on the lookout for some new combinations. I usually pick some up as soon as they come out now and plant mid-October. What can I say, I like to keep my neighbourhood squirrels well fed. THIS year I will remember to soak them in the bitter taste deterrent Bobbex and see if that slows them down. My neighbourhood squirrels do have good taste in bulbs though! Check out the new varieties of bulbs for 2014

Corona Tools

Tools

Now is a great time to inspect and fix the fixable and toss or repurpose the tools that are not (hint…they make great stakes or gate attachments). It's also a great time to invest in new tools as pruning season is just around the corner ( when most things go dormant).

That ought to keep you busy for now. There are a ton of farm gate veggie sales and farmer’s markets to take advantage of right now. There are also some wonderful Fall Fairs coming up…ours on Sept.21 and 22 is one of them. Hope to see you there!


Saturday, October 26, 2013
Posted By: Laurelle Olfdord-Down in Fall Gardening

Halloween is just around the corner and if you are feeling in the mood to design up a ghostly garden or a petrifying planter here are some of my favorites…bwhahaha.

happy halloween sign

whipcord cedar

Whipcord Cedar

Thuja plicata ‘Whipchord’

Just look at this thing, if this little guy doesn’t remind you of Cousin Itt from the Addam’s Family and cry out for a pair of glasses and a beret then I am a monkey’s uncle…or aunt. When it is a young plant it looks vaguely spidery...well not even vaguely. Let’s just say when it was covered in dew the other day and misted in the fog I gave it a wide berth just to be safe. It is a hardy little guy growing well in Zones 5-7 in moist well drained loamy soil in sun to part shade. It is a slow growing little waterfall of a plant eventually reaching 5 feet by 5 feet. In the winter it takes on a coppery green tone.

twisty baby robinia

Twisty Baby Robinia

Robinia pseudoacacia ‘Lace Lady’

Delicate and artsy in the spring and summer with its soft green leaflets but by Halloween…its naked and twisty stems bring to mind Macbeth’s witches for some reason. The branches are great for cutting and sticking in your planters for Halloween to dangle spiders and other creepys from and then do double duty when you spray them with glitter to create some eye catching Christmas and winter interest. This contorted small tree or large shrub, depending on how you want to look at it, is hardy from Zones 4 to 9. It prefers average well drained soil in sun or part shade. It grows 15 feet tall and wide, though you can keep it a bit smaller if you regularly use the branches for arrangements.

cobweb hens n chicks

 

Cobweb Hens and Chicks

Sempervivum arachnoidum ‘Cebenese’

Think of the savings…you won’t even need to buy that spiderweb stuff and get all tangled up in it so it looks like damp clumps of snow hanging from your Japanese maple (sorry flashback of Halloween decorating from last year). I love these little cobwebby guys, just look at them!! Hardy from Zones 4-6, this clumping evergreen grows only 3 to 6 inches tall. A full sun position in well draining soil will set this little guy off nicely and it will thrive even with indifferent watering. Great for pots and xeriscaping.

Rhodo makinoi

Rhododendron makinoi

The last place you would think I’d find a spooky plant is the Rhododendron house right? Wrong! The long (sometimes up to 7 inches!!) slender recurved leaves with brown indumentum (that’s fuzz for newbies) on the underside and white fuzzy new leaves just screams out witches fingers to me…though possibly I’d just eaten too much candy corn at that point. Granted the cheerful soft pink trusses of flower bells, slightly spotted with red (could be blood) might ruin the spooky effect in spring and make this plant…gasp…look charming, we won’t worry about that right now. This evergreen rhododendron from the Yakushimanum family is hardy in Zones 5b to 8 and thrives in a moist, loamy, well drained slightly acidic soil in part to dappled shade and can even tolerate full sun. Notice I said tolerate, kind of like a teenager tolerates Big Band music. It is a slow grower to 4-6 feet high and wide. This lovely….er spooky shrub has also won an Award of Garden Merit from the Royal Horticultural society so there.

Corokia cotoneaster

Corokia cotoneaster

If I had a nickel for every time a customer asked me –“Hey, is that plant dead?” - I’d be a very rich lady. This kind of got me thinking about…Zombies!!! This plant wins the zombie plant award with its silvery and gunmetal grey zigzagging branches and its tiny grey green leaves (total zombie colours I might add) it looks somehow not really alive, almost artificial. One of its other names is Wire Netting plant and in the winter it sure does look like that. It is a borderline hardy plant at zone 8-10 and it seems like our wet knocks it out rather that our cold weather. If you have a spot against your house or can keep in in a pot and bring it in to a greenhouse, cold frame or a garage with a window it should do just fine. It needs well drained soil and full to part sun. Now it does get clusters of butter yellow tiny flowers in the spring and they are fragrant and…well…dainty and cheerful…but like the Rhodo makinoi, we won’t worry about that right now. A little dry ice and Walking Dead theme music and you have yourself a zombie plant.

Black Mondo Grass

Black Mondo Grass

And then there is the Bleakly Black Ophiopogon planescapus ‘Nigrescens’ or Black Mondo Grass. Yes, purple black grass and its ALIVE bwahaha!!! It actually looks cool against orange and white pumpkins in a pot. This creeping ever-black perennial produces small purple flowers in spring and purple black berries (zombie eyeballs) in fall. Makes great ‘Pumpkin Hair’ if you decide to plant up your pumpkins after carving…special note, pumpkins start to decay once your carve them so carving them up closer to Halloween is best…unless you want them all mushy which is extra scary. This wicked perennial is hardy in Zones 5 to 10 and can take full to part sun in a moist well drained humic soil. If you want this plant to really show, under-plant with a light leaved ground cover.

Have a great Halloween and don’t eat too much candy corn…you never know what creepy plant you’ll run into!


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Art's Nursery is a 10+ acre retail and wholesale garden centre located in Surrey, a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. We've been in business at this same location since 1973 and we're proud to serve you today!

We carry an incredible selection of plants, shrubs, trees, annuals, perennials, vines, groundcovers, roses and much more. Soils, bulk materials, pottery and a variety of garden accents are also available.

Our plant selection is so large that you can actually drive a golf cart while you shop!

We pride ourselves on providing high quality plant, expert advice and an exceptional gardening experience.


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Friday, October 5, 2018
Green Manure And Cover Crops

Friday, October 5, 2018
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