Crazy For Conifers
If you’re looking for new and unusual hardy plants that make an impression, try Dwarf Conifers! You will be awe-struck by their beauty… different colors, shapes, foliage and textures abound! Grabbing the attention of budding conifer enthusiasts as well as established collectors, local garden centers are offering these solid, durable, well –mannered plants for the home garden or container. Go Crazy For Conifers!
What the heck is a conifer? It’s a woody plant that reproduces by fertile seeds formed within a cone. In short, “cone bearing” plants. Most conifers have needles. The needle is to the conifer as the leaf is to flowering plant. Needlelike foliage is an adaptation to protect plants from drought and cold. This is why conifers are very cold hardy plants and usually don’t succumb to dry conditions.
Dwarf conifers have several positive points. Smaller plants fit into todays’ smaller landscapes. Landscape designers like them because they are looking for different plants to add character to their products and designs. The public is also becoming more educated and wants unusual plant material. Finally, these plants require LESS MAINTENANCE in terms of pruning and general care.
The word dwarf can be a bit vague when it comes to describing small scale conifers. One conifer buff said that a dwarf was a plant that he could still see over in 20 years. The American Conifer Society explains growth rates and sizes in four categories.
- Miniature: less than 3” growth per year, expected size @ 10-15 years would be 2-3’
- Dwarf: 3-6” growth per year, expected size@ 10-15 years would be 3-6’
- Intermediate: 6-12” growth per year, expected size@ 10-15 years would be 6-15’
- Large: over12” growth per years, expected size @ 10-15 years would be over 15’
There is so much variability among species that you’ll find the growers of conifers ( Islei Nursery ) put “growth rate” instead of “mature height” on their plant tags. Read the tags and ask at your local garden center for help in choosing the right plants for your garden.
Discover Conifers color variations in gold, blue and emerald green. Enjoy their many forms: globose (rounded), pendulous (weeping), narrow upright, prostrate (ground-hugging), and irregular architectural shapes .Their wide range of form variations add to the popular appeal. Buy one and you’ll be smitten. You’ll be back for more and the innocent hobby of growing dwarf conifers takes seed.