Specializing in Native Plants, Wildflowers and Perennials

ENHANCING THE SUBTLE REDBUD

Sometime between the rusty red of the maples and the dazzling white of the dogwoods comes the red-violet cloud-like beauty displayed through a cloak of pea-flowers sited up and down black, zigzag branches. 

Imperceptible at first, with one or two tiny flowers, progressing finally into a floating haze in the woods announcing that spring is truly underway.  Drawing to mind the purple coneflower, which will pop into bloom a few weeks hence, the redbud brings a subtle beauty to the landscape for two to three weeks starting in March, overlapping the explosion of dogwoods in April.  The combination of pink and white in the forest canopy can be quite lovely.  Nature does very well at landscaping the garden, but what other combinations could enhance the subtle beauty of the redbud?

If your garden has shade, the Indica variety azalea ‘George L. Tabor’ can give a regal bearing to the redbud.  Planted at its base, the magenta throat of the orchid-pink flowers pick up the redbud’s hue quite nicely. 

 

A real showstopper can be had by grove planting a combination of redbud and dogwood, then under plant with an azalea tapestry of ‘George L. Tabor’ and ‘G.G. Gerbing’, a white sport of 'Geo. L. Tabor’.  A curtain of orchid and white will emerge from canopy down to the earth, lasting three to four weeks in spring.  Give the azaleas ample space for they grow wide as well as tall.

A more restrained shade combination may be created by combining purple Lunaria annua, the common money plant with golden ragwort, Senecio aureus.  The purple money plant picks up the common redbud color while the ragwort adds a spark of yellow to set off the whole vignette

If sun is your garden’s habitat, then the Phlox subulata in the old time magenta color is the closest shade to redbud I have observed.  A group of three redbuds on the left of the driveway mirrored by the Thrift planted on the steep slope to the right of the driveway can truly excite the senses in the spring as one comes home from a hard day at the office.  If you add some yellow 'Primrose’ pansies or ‘Peeping Tom’ daffodils under the trees and behind the phlox, the picture is all the more spectacular.

Do not over look the common Cercis canadensis when you think of expanding your garden’s forest additions, for not only is this tree lovely in spring, it offers bold, heart-shaped leaves in summer and dark-brown to black bark showcased on ascending branches in the winter garden.  Fall’s butter yellow foliage is just the icing on the cake to this multi-seasonally ornamental native tree.

The Cercis, or native Redbud,provides some of the earliest color in the garden. 
Appropriate underplanting will draw your eye.
Bulbs in the Garden

Fall is For Planting

Enhancing the Subtle Redbud

Drought Busting Color

Color Pots

Garden Portfolio

What to Ask

Points to Ponder

Just Planted Landscape Photos

 

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