Outdoor Containers with Shrubs, Perennials, and Annuals

A great example of arrangements built around shrubs.

Are you a small-space gardener that gets jealous of the great trees and shrubs you see other people growing? Or perhaps a container gardening guru that wants to take your displays to the next level of height and year-round interest?

Learn how to use shrubs in containers today! Check out the latest Press Release from Wayside Gardens, featuring 6 tips on how to successfully incorporate shrubs or small trees into your mixed containers.

Here is a preview:

  1. Since the tree or shrub will grow to be the largest plant by far, this is the cornerstone of the design. Lovely compact choices for mixed containers are: Acer, Camellia, Buddleia,Hydrangea, or Crapemyrtle.


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An orange-inspired garden design with purple accents.

Click here to see the Pinterest board of the best orange varieties!

We’ve all got our favorite color, that one that just seems to “pop” for us more than all the others. For me, that color is orange; nothing seems quite so vibrant as a bright orange bloom on a sunny day. Whenever I come across a particularly beautiful orange specimen, I just think about how good it would look in a whole orange arrangement. That’s why I put together this garden design to serve as a planner for myself and the other orange-aholics out there.

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Acer Palmatum 'Ariadne'
Acer Palmatum 'Ariadne'

If you own one of those beautiful lacy Acer japonicums or Acer
palmatums with the delicate red leaves, you have probably witnessed the
effects of wind, drought, and the hot sun. Many of the new species are
being bred more and more resilient, but overall, Laceleaf Japanese
Maples have a tendency to scorch in hot, dry, or windy conditions.

Take Preventative Actions

If you are planting a new Japanese Maple, think about your climate and
exposure to wind and sun. If you plant them out in the open with no
wind screen, they will be more likely to dry out.

Water your
Japanese Maple deeply once a week, and more often if conditions are
severe. Keep an eye on your plant daily, so you will know if it needs
more water. The leaves will start to droop a few hours before they dry
out and scorch.

Don't Worry

Japanese Maples
are very resilient. If they are damaged, losing a few leaves is not
going to kill them – they will usually bounce back and fill in with
proper treatment, as long as the limbs aren't dead. Our big tree here
at Wayside Gardens got scorched by a frost last year. It was ugly for a
whole growing season, but this year, you couldn't tell it had ever been

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JapaneseAcerThe foliage of Japanese Maples can be very fine and delicate, which is often part of their appeal to many gardeners. To maintain a healthy plant with such delicate parts, sometimes tender care is in order. Japanese maples need protection from the sun, protection from the cold, protection from the wind, and plenty of moisture to maintain that beautiful signature foliage that makes them so popular.

Choose a good location when planting your Acer–a tree in the open will be very susceptible to the elements. As the tree grows and establishes stronger roots it will become less vulnerable, but while the tree is still young make sure there is shade and some sort of windscreen available.

Cover your tree if you are expecting a frost or an extremely windy day. Frost, drought, wind, and direct sunlight will scorch your tree in just a day – cover your tree if you suspect unfavorable conditions to hold in that much needed moisture.

Water deeply weekly. This is probably the most important tip. Give thorough waterings, but no more often than necessary – force the roots to grow down. You want your Japanese Maple Tree to grow a deep healthy root system that will allow it to have bright, full, healthy leaves even when conditions are less than adequate.

You can read more about this topic here: Caring For Japanese Maples

You can find similar hints and tips in Wayside Gardens’ online Plant Care Library.

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