I am not a fan of Bradford Pear trees. Don’t get me wrong, they are beautiful when blooming, however when they reach a certain age they just start falling apart limb by limb and don’t last long. Whoever bred the tree must be a millionaire several times over by now. One flower alternative is the dogwood tree. There are several different types available from native to variegated to dwarf varieties in colors red, pink and white. I have three different variegated varieties. One called Wolfeyes blooms backwards from other dogwoods; they bloom after the leaves come out. I have two dwarf varieties, a red Pigmy and a Little Princess. One variety called Cherokee Princess has huge as big as your hand blooms. I had to get two of them. Another the Cornus Dogwood has a double bloom on it. I didn’t show the full tree as it has a tomato cage around it to protect it from the hooligans. Several of my smaller trees has a cage around them until they get established to prevent being pulled out of the ground and being found in the middle of the yard in pieces. I have another dogwood called Venus had has large round shaped leaves. I haven’t seen that one bloom yet.
The major drawback of dogwoods is that they have shallow roots and need to be mulched heavily. They like afternoon shade, but can be planted in the sun if mulched heavily and watered often. One of the biggest reasons for a dead dogwood is hitting it with a lawn mower or weed eater. These trees aren’t a good choice for a commercial or high traffic areas.
Stay tune, part two to follow after daylily season.
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