Articles in Category: Trees

Cornus mas

on Tuesday, 03 March 2015. Posted in Berries Attract Wildlife, Showy Bark/Stems, Fall Color, Trees, Flowering Plants

Cornelian Cherry

cornus-mas

Cornelian Cherry is a dogwood relative that is a beacon of light in the gloomy days of early spring.  It is rare to find a yellow blooming tree and since Cornus mas bloom so early, the blooms last an extra long time- up to two months.  Blooming so early means they may be susceptible to a late spring frost if it coincides with the blooms emerging but once open they can take the occasional freeze.  The small yellow inflorescences just glow in the low light of spring and look especially good with a dark green background of pines or doug firs.  Like most dogwoods they do best in dappled light or as an understory tree but these species seem to take more sun than a regular dogwood.  We have observed some in full sun in the Rogue Valley surviving just fine.  After the flower show, small, shiny, oval leaves with a curved margin emerge and get yellow or red/purple fall color.  More interesting are the red, oblong, up to 3/4", fruits that come on in the fall and hang on until birds feed on them.  They are edible, best for preserves as they are a bit sour.  The Cornelian Cherry is a great choice for a small, disease and pest resistant tree that provides multi-season interest and easy care.  They typically will get 15-20' wide and tall at a slow to medium growth rate.

There is a beautiful specimen at the OSU Extension Office on Hanley Rd. in Central Point.

Pinus thunbergii 'Thunderhead'

on Monday, 20 October 2014. Posted in Winter Interest, Conifer, Evergreen, Deer Resistant, Trees, Drought Tolerant

Thunderhead Dwarf Japanese Black Pine

thunderhead-pine-plant-of-t

'Thunderhead' Japanese Black Pine is a wonderful compact specimen conifer.  Like most pines it is drought tolerant and deer resistant but what sets it apart from other pines is it's tight, dense form and handsome white candles in spring that stand out from the dark green needles.  It is a slow to medium grower ranging from 5-10' tall and 5-8' wide but keeps it's dense form over time.  This Japanese Black Pine will tolerate drier, sandy soils or moister soil as long as it's well drained and requires full sun. They look striking in trios or as a specimen in a smaller garden.  Makes a great pairing with the white bark of birches, or yellow Spirea 'Ogon', or purple Smokebush.

Pyrus pyrifolia

on Saturday, 01 March 2014. Posted in Fall Color, Edible, Trees, Flowering Plants

Asian Pear

asian-pear-espaliered

asian-pear--closeup We're on a fruit tree kick, so here's another good choice for the Rogue Valley climate- Asian Pears!  Pears in general do well in the valley, as history has shown, and asian pears are an especially delicious way to add more variety to your fruit choices.  They are a great selection for the home orchard because they are easy to grow and tend to be expensive at the grocery store since they don't always travel well.  An Asian Pear fresh off the tree is a true treat.  They seem like a cross between an apple and pear; being round and crisp like an apple, with a slight flavor of pear but more complex and sweet.  They are great fresh or sliced into salads and can be cooked.  They also store for at least a month in the refrigerator.  They need another Asian Pear or a European Pear like 'Bartlett' for pollination.  Being in pear country, we've had good pollination on our one asian pear just from neighboring pears. Asian Pears also produce fruit when young so you don't have to wait years before you can enjoy the crisp fruit.   Besides the fruit, they also have ornamental value with large, white flowers in the spring and orange/red foliage in the fall.  If you don't have lots of space for a fruit tree, they espalier against a fence or trellis really well.  In the photo we have one trained against copper tubing- every year it just gets pruned back to spurs and growing it flat makes it very easy to pick the fruit.  Full sun to at least half a day of sun is prefered and like all fruit trees, good drainage is best to keep diseases at bay.  An occasional deep soak is the best way to water, allowing the roots to grow deep and letting it dry out between waterings. 

The varieties we like are: