Choosing The Perfect Japanese Maple If Limited Space
Some people only have enough space for, maybe, three Japanese maples but they love Japanese maples. Jim believes that it is important to first think about the taller Japanese maple; those would be placed in the rear of the garden, then you would come down in front of that with, maybe, a size that's a little smaller and then you work forward to one of your dwarf Japanese dysectum maples that are much lower. So where ever you are, you are building up to the background or coming from the back working your way down. Jim personally would want to select a yellow Japanese maple with beautiful yellow color. That one is easy to select, he would always select Sango kaku which is the coral bark Japanese maple. It has a beautiful yellow green when it first comes out, then it turns more of a bright yellow and then it goes to sort of a peach color with sort of yellow orange in it. Then the nicest thing is when it drops its leaves, all of the stems are coral or reddish color. It has great winter interest and then in the spring it comes out again with beautiful sort of chartreuse leaves that then turn green with beautiful, dainty little lacy leaves. So it is a beautiful little maple. The other maple everybody wants is a red maple. So if you are going to use a red maple go with the tall one in the background, which of course could be a Bloodgood. It is very popular because it has bright red leaves in the spring, not just the fall. Emperor, has sort of a reddish purple leaf through the spring and then in the fall turns a bright red. The nicest thing about that particular maple is it is heartier for frost, late frost because it comes out a little later. The Bloodgood will come into fall color first, completely finish, drop its leaves and then you have Emperor One, which is a cultivar, that is going to be that beautiful bright red for another two or three weeks so you extend your fall color. Then, for Jim the smaller dissectum maples with the beautiful lace leaves is ideal. Everybody wants them. They're dwarf. If you do have a sunny area, to Jim, there are only two dwarfs that do well in the sun - Tamukeyama and also Crimson Queen. They also do great with morning sun up until two o'clock.
By Justin Hancock, Monrovia Horticultural Craftsman
Photographs courtesy of Monrovia
Labor Day may represent summer’s unofficial close but now is a perfect opportunity to add late-summer perennials that will continue to beautify your landcare until fall arrives. click here for an article that identifies 9 perennials for late summer.
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