Month: January 2012

The American Conifer Society – Southeastern Region Rendezvous 2012 visit to my Garden…

I recently had the honor in having members of the American Conifer Society- Southeastern Region and other conifer enthusiasts, visit my garden this weekend. Harry and Rona Bethea, of Bannister Creek Nursery, hosted this ‘Rendezvous’ of visitors throughout my garden and another local garden, that of Wes and Charlene Rowe. Meeting and mingling with all the fellow conifer enthusiasts (a.k.a. coneheads), was an incredible experience and made me realize that I too am a conifer lover and proud of it!  Being able to converse with so many knowledgeable and wonderful people made me want to become a part of their  ‘conifer family’  in sharing this enthusiasm .


January 7, 2012- ACS Southeast Region Rendezvous


Though I also adore my Japanese Maples and other flowering shrubs and trees, I must admit I have acquired an addiction for conifers over the last 6 years.  I’ve come to realize, conifers are incredibly versatile and reliable adding wonderful texture, form, and color to my garden. They come in a palette of different blues, greens, golds and bronzes and also add ‘personality and art form’ to my landscape all year long when most of my deciduous trees and shrubs have shed their leaves. Most of my conifers are easy to care for in my Zone 7b garden. Of course, through trail and error and having a great conifer mentor like Harry Bethea, I’ve learned certain conifers will do really well in our climate as long as you have implemented the following steps: choosing the right planting site, planting properly, plant high or in raised beds, give adequate water especially in the 1st year and during drought, and do some occasional pruning and spring fertilizing with a mild organic fertilizer such as Hollytone.


My garden-Summer 2011


Summer 2011


Here’s a sampling of some of the many conifers I have collected over the years for my southern garden- I have well over 100 in my landscape but these are some of my favorites…

Conifer Association links:  and

Picea orientalis 'Skylands'
Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar -(Cedrus atlantica)
Chamaecyparis nootkatensis & Tsuga canadensis 'Pendula'
Cedrus deodara 'Snow Sprite'
Cupressus macrocarpa 'Saligna Aurea'
Cedrus deodara 'Feelin Blue'


Picea omorika 'Pendula Bruns'
Picea likiangensis var. purpurea
Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Lemon Twist'
Picea abies 'Frohburg'


Tsuga canadensis 'Summer Snow'
Picea abies 'Pendula'



Cedrus deodara 'Sanders Blue'
Juniperus horizontalis 'Gold Strike'
Juniperus squamata 'Blue Star'
Metasequoia glyptostroboides 'Golden Dawn'




Oh My! Bulb Mania in my Garden…

Over the holiday break I finally found the time to plant my spring bulbs. I ordered over 3,500 this year, mainly tulips and daffodils. Since I live in the south (Zone 7b) I usually treat most of my tulips as annuals  in order to have an abundance of huge blooms in the spring. Having planted over 2,000 bulbs last year,  hand-troweled I might add, I decided to use an auger this year.  Wow!  What a difference it made. I saved alot of time, having finished most of my bulb planting in 2 days,  but most importantly, my back and hamstrings definitely benefited from using the auger.




I bought this bulb auger at my local nursery.  It attaches easily to a cordless drill and is long enough so you can stand while using it.

It saved my back while planting over 3,000 bulbs.




Here are some of my 2012 Bulb picks for my Garden ……

Best Red Tulips

‘Best Red’– a poppy red tulip that I plant every year in my front yard planting beds by the hundreds. Beautiful!




French Blend Rose Tulips

 ‘French Blend Rose’– Beautiful combo of pink, rose, and apricot that goes well with my apricot/orange roses in the spring.


Mount Tacoma Double Tulips

‘Mt. Tacoma’- lovely double white late tulip. I love using these in containers and in my blue and white garden.


‘Angelique’- considered as one of the most beautiful tulips. Double soft pink petals with silver edges. Absolutely stunning!


Strike me Pink  Tulips

‘Strike Me Pink’- a blend of maroon and lavender. I love to plant this with yellow snapdragons around my ‘Lemon Twist’  Hinoki Cypress.


Linifolia species Tulip

Linifolia’- a species tulip. Flowers open to scarlet with black centers.  Great for rock gardens. Mine are planted around my Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar and other conifers.


ElNino Tulips

El Nino’- Flowers red and rose, amber and rose, or all three at once. Beautiful in containers.


Ice Follies Daffid

‘Ice Follies’- Large, silvery white flowers with a lemon-yellow cup. Great daffodil for naturalizing. I have hundreds of daffodils; I like mixing these with the traditional yellow ones.



‘Starflower’- Blue flowers on low mats of foliage. Great for rock gardens and edge of border. I plant mine everywhere..containers ,around other bulbs, my conifer gardens, and my woodland area. Great bulb for the south.


Maureen tulips

‘Maureen’-Classic tall white tulip, great for cutting.  Looks lovely in my all white garden.


Now, if spring would just get here….I’m counting the days.





For the last several years I have ordered my bulbs from Colorblends. Love the selection and quality.

Credit for Bulb photo’s – Colorblends.