• 66°

Look for texture as well as color

The days are getting shorter and fall leaf drop somehow sends to me a signal for dreary winter days ahead. But, with a bit of imagination, homeowners can constructively use various plant materials for winter interest in the landscape.
Most homeowners say that color is the most important of all design elements in the landscape. Plant materials that produce berries are an excellent source of color, especially in the fall and winter.
Berries can offer much color during the winter season, including many species of holly from deep reds to transparent yellow. Holly cultivars such as Fosteri holly and Savannah holly provide abundant, fluorescent red fruit.
Deciduous hollies are increasing in popularity, with profuse bright berries providing a massive show of color. Holly cultivars such as Sparkleberry or Winterberry are excellent choices for the home landscape. Holly berries provide an excellent contrast against an evergreen backdrop. Hurley Park has a splendid collection of deciduous and evergreen hollies well worth the visit.
Common nandina berries, when properly pruned and maintained, are also an excellent source of color. Showy berries are often used in holiday decorations. Plant breeders have bred nandina cultivars featuring yellow and even white berries.
Color is certainly important, but bark texture is another design element commonly overlooked in landscapes. The loose, papery bark of a river birch or the corky alligator-like texture of a mature sourwood beckons us to look closer or to feel. Hornbeam (Carpinus carolinana), or muscle wood tree, is a native that produces interesting trunk texture resembling flexed muscles.
Consider leaf texture as another winter design element. Magnolias cultivars such as Bracken’s Brown Beauty and D.D. Blancher produce a course-textured leaf with a rusty-brown pubescence on the underneath side. Canadian hemlock offers a very fine, weepy textured element to the landscape. These plants are very picturesque with a blanket of fresh snow.
Deciduous and evergreen vines soften corners and hold down vertical lines of buildings, fences and arbors. The twining effect, with an occasional bloom or berry, creates added winter interest. Winter berry (Celastris scandens) produces a yellow-orange berry often used in holiday decorations. Yellow jasmine (Gelsemium sempervirens Rankii) blooms both in late fall and early spring. These are excellent vines for fences or arbors.
Landscaping involves much more than spring color and massive foundation plantings. Take time to study the finer details of plant material for year around interest in the landscape.
Darrell Blackwelder, Extension Agent-Horticulture, Rowan County Center, North Carolina Cooperative Extension; 704-216-8970.
http://www.rowanmastergardener.com
http://rowan.ces.ncsu.edu
 

Comments

Comments closed.

Landis

Landis approves new land development ordinance, zoning map

Landis

Landis approves body camera, stun gun purchase for public safety officers

Crime

One charged, another dead on sheriff’s most wanted list

Crime

No injuries after car shot eight times on Old Concord Road

Education

RSS talks first steps for new federal relief totaling $66 million

China Grove

Gary’s Barbecue staff, customers look back at 50 years

News

Salisbury Lions Club names Person of the Year, Lion of the Year at 78th annual banquet

Education

Student COVID-19 numbers show first decline since plan A

High School

High school golf: Fowler competes in state tournament

News

Amazon announces new distribution center for North Carolina

News

House passes bill to bar Cooper from mandating COVID shot

Coronavirus

Rowan County sees death 302 from COVID-19; Health Department to host final mass vaccine clinic

Ask Us

Ask Us: What happened to work on South Fulton Street home?

Crime

Blotter: Woman says she was shot in hand on Lincolnton Road

Crime

Rowan Sheriff’s Office charges Salisbury man with operating illegal gambling business

Crime

Blotter: Rockwell man arrested on felony drug, breaking and entering charges

Local

Rep. Amber Baker discusses legislative session during Rowan Democrats breakfast meeting

Local

Thousands of locals, out-of-towners gather for a groovy time at annual Hippie Fest

News

N.C. Zoo ready for expansion if lawmakers OK funding

Education

RSS budgeting for tens of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding

East Spencer

‘Back in full swing’ for the spring: East Spencer community gathers for food, fun and fellowship at Spring Fest

Local

Rowan native Lingle among those honored with NC Military Veterans Hall of Fame induction

Business

Former pro baseball player, Tar Heel standout Russ Adams finds new career with Trident Insured

Education

Profoundly gifted: Salisbury boy finishing high school, associates degree at 12