Monday, April 26, 2010

Malus 'Prairifire', Evening Garden Walk

When family or friends join us for an evening walk in the garden, I will point out "this is one of my favorite trees". The only problem with that statement is we have planted about 50 specimens over the years, and each was selected because of a particular habit or feature which we found especially appealing. This time of year a spectacular tree happens to be the flowering crabapple, (Malus 'Priarifire').

The photos do some justice to the actual blossom, an unmatched beauty of color in the landscape, and when I see this tree in full bloom, all I can think of is ‘HOT’!

As we start down the path the blue, purple and pink Columbine (Aquilegia), which have freely seeded, cover the area beneath one of the birch trees. Do enjoy the fragrance of the lilac while stopping for a moment to look at the rich purple red foliage of this great maple, Acer Platanoides 'Crimson King' (one of my favorite trees).

The sloping field below the main garden is home for the three Malus 'Prairifire'. These 15-20’ trees, rounded in habit, require little or no maintenance, do not drop their fruit, and clearly are quite the showstopper this time of year - a beautiful addition to any garden. (I won't tell you that we planted another young one in the main part of the garden last fall when we found it on sale.)

April brings forth their “fire” in the landscape, summer yields reddish green foliage, the fall transforms it into red and orange, and the red berries of fall and winter offer the birds a feast; the bark - a glossy dark reddish brown.

As we approach the bottom of the path let us turn right. The towering Cedrus Deodara can be seen in the distance, while the Ligustrum x vicaryi 'Aurea' (privet) nestles beneath the Malus.

A closer look says these two may have something going on.

Shall we walk beyond the Cedrus Deodara and turn back for an opposite view and a wonderful Sequoiadendron giganteum 'Pendulum'? Don't you simply love the weeping whimsical stature of this evergreen? Reminds me of a Dr. Seuss character.

Well, it is almost time to go in. We hope you have found something to enjoy during this evening garden walk. Thank you for being here, and we shall do it again.