chinkapin oak

My Favorite Tree

Chinkapin Oak
Quercus muehlenberggii

Selecting the right tree is difficult given Colorado’s extreme weather variations and wide-ranging soil conditions. The Chinkapin Oak is relatively alkaline resistant and water thrifty – both imperative in our high plains desert climate. The Oak has a great green color and its narrow, shiny green leaves provide light shade. The fall color is subtle with golds and browns, but the tree tends to hold onto its leaves longer, providing winter interest. They are slow growing and very low maintenance– the perfect replacement for a Green Ash.

Tim Flanagan, Owner

Sustainable Landscapes Colorado, Lakewood, CO

(303) 986-4000 •

My Favorite Shrub

Southern Bush Honeysuckle
Diervilla sessilifolia

This compact or low-growing deciduous shrub adapts to sun or shade growing to 3’ in height and 4’ in width. We use it as a mass planting in a naturalistic design scheme. The yellow flower is not showy but appropriate to the desired look.Other qualities of this shrub include deer resistance, drought resistance and great fall color. A handful of cultivars offer different leaf colors as well.

John L. Mayer, Landscape Architect

John Lindsay Mayer Landscape Architect, Inc., Farmington, MI

(248) 615-1262 •

My Favorite Ground Cover

Lamium ‘Orchid Frost’
Lamium maculatum ‘Orchid Frost’

My first choice for a colorful flowering ground cover is Lamium ‘Orchid Frost’.Variegated leaves with green edges and silver centers along with the cool lavender flowers will brighten up any shade to partial shade situation. It’s easy to care for,few pests, reliable flowering and quick to recover from any deer tasting. Mixed with Hosta, Bergenias, Lady’s Mantle, Ferns or Bleeding Heart will create an ever-changing garden. Good drainage and organic soils with available moisture will ensure its success.

James Babcock, Chief Landscape Designer

Superior Scape, Inc., Shelby Township, MI

(586) 739-9630 •

Click here to return to newsletter homepage